RIA Novosti: Putin Fires Slew of Top Interior Ministry Officials

Biryulyovo Riots file photo

MOSCOW, October 30 (RIA Novosti) ­ Russian President Vladimir Putin dismissed a number of senior Interior Ministry officials on Wednesday, including the police head of the Moscow district that was the scene of violent nationalist riots earlier this month.

Putin dismissed Alexander Podolny, the police chief of Moscow’s southern administrative district, from his post effective immediately, according to a Kremlin statement.

Anatoly Yakunin, head of the Moscow branch of the Interior Ministry, earlier said he had requested that Podolny be sacked in connection with the anti-migrant riots in Moscow’s Biryulyovo district, which fell inside Podolny’s jurisdiction.

Yakunin had also fired the head of the Western Biryulyovo police department, Gennady Kaverin, over the protests.

Putin also dismissed the head of Moscow’s criminal investigation department Alexander Trushkin, the ministry’s deputy head in Nizhny Novgorod Viktor Tsyganov, and the deputy chief of the ministry’s investigation department Nikolai Shelepanov, among others.

Moscow’s entire police force was put on alert and nearly 400 people were arrested during massive anti-migrant protests over an October 10 stabbing death, in which police said an Azerbaijani migrant allegedly killed a 25-year-old ethnic Russian. Hours after the riots, police arrested over 1,200 migrant workers in a raid on a local vegetable warehouse, starting off a major ongoing crackdown on illegal migrants in the capital.