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Russian Car Owners Campaign Against Sirens

MOSCOW -- The Federation of Russian Car Owners (FAR) has begun a nationwide campaign against the sirens used by officials so their cars can bypass traffic, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Representatives of the federation announced on April 13 that special leaflets protesting the use of sirens by officials and bumper stickers stating "People's servant, remove the siren," and "Sirens -- Russia's shame!" will be regularly distributed among car owners.

In Russia, officials use sirens when driving though busy streets, and the flashing lights and piercing noise allows their drivers to ignore traffic regulations. Such trips through towns and cities by official multicar convoys sometimes cause accidents.

The leader of FAR's branch in Moscow, Sergei Kanayev, told RFE/RL that FAR's leadership is preparing a special letter to President Dmitry Medvedev urging him to ban the use of sirens by senior officials.

Several organizations and partner groups linked to FAR also announced their support for the campaign.