The special services in Russia are preparing to destroy the anarchist movement. The pretext is the bomb attacks of the young anarchists.
17 years old anarchist Mikhail Zhlobitsky blew himself up in the building of FSB of Arkhangelsk city in the morning of the 31st of October. Before the explosion he posted messages in the ‘Vkontakte’ social network and in ‘Rechi buntovshchika (‘Speeches of the Rebel’)’ chat in Telegram messenger (t.me/rebeltalk). In these messages several minutes before the explosion he warned about the preparing action, and named the reasons – propaganda by action and revenge for the torture and repressions by FSB against the anarchists.
14 year old Michael’s supposed comrade was arrested by special services in Moscow on the 2nd of November. Special services accuse Kirill Kuzminkin in preparing a bomb attack on the neo-nazi march. Kirill denies the accusation. Cops claim that components for the production of explosives have been found in Kirill’s house. Kirill’s father claims that these are components for the production of firecrackers, and special services are trying to present the teenager as a terrorist. Soon after the arrest of Kuzminkin FSB announced that they are planning to arrest 10 more anarchists from Moscow, whose identities are yet unknown. FSB says that together with Kuzminkin these activists were part of a birgade of anarchists-bombers. However, there have been no attacks involving bombs in Moscow since long time, and teenagers, such as Kuzminkin, could not have participated in older attacks that happened around 7 years ago. However, the absence of such attacks does not stop FSB from searching for the “anarchists-bombers”.
At the same time the police and special services countrywide interrogate anarchists, socialists, anti-fascists, and even libertarians. Subscribers of “Narodnaya Samooborona (People’s Self-Defense)”, the largest Russian anarchist resource, and “Rechi buntovshchika (‘Speeches of the Rebel’)”, the anarchist chat in the Telegram, where Mikhail Zhlobitsky’s message about the upcoming attack on the FSB was posted, are being massively investigated. For example, in Krasnodar, about a hundred people were summoned to talk with the police. They were asked about their attitude towards anarchism, “Narodnaya Samooborona” and the action of Zhlobitsky. It is reported that the police and special services intend to check all the subscribers of the “Narodnaya Samooborona” group in social networks – these are 26 thousands of people.
As a result of the operation of the security forces, new criminal cases against anarchists have already appeared. On the 4th of November, a local anarchist Vyacheslav Lukichev was detained in Kaliningrad, he is known in the anarchist environment by his animal protection and anti-fascist activities. Vyacheslav is accused of publicly justifying terrorism for having published on the “Prometheus” anarchist Telegram-channel Mikhail Zhlobitsky’s pre-death message. Despite the fact that this message was published by lots of mass media of the country, Vyacheslav is now facing up to seven years in prison. It is obvious that such a selective “justice” is connected with the anarchist views of Vyacheslav and the hatred of the special services to the anarchists and “Prometheus”. FSB tried to accuse Vyacheslav’s girlfriend of this crime, after that he took the blame on himself for saving her.
We have all the reasons for concerns that these detentions are only the beginning of a new big wave of repressions against Russian anarchists. Soon after the arrest, the lawyer described conditions of interrogation and detention of Lukichev: he has been tortured for 36 hours, deprived of food and sleep, was physically agressed, humiliated and interrogated.
On November 7, the anniversary of the Revolution of 1917 and the 130 Birthday of Nestor Makhno, FSB managed to get access to the Telegram channel “Prometei”. After that, they have published an ironic post where they “congratulated” anarchists with Makhno’s birtday and published a photo of Lukichev, exhausted by 36-hour tortures and interrogations, and sleeping in the interrogation room, his head on the table. In their post, FSB threatened other administrators of “Prometei” and Lukichev’s friends. It’s still unknown how FSB got access to the channel. Most probably they managed to make a copy of the SIM-card of the founder ot this channel, because telecommunication operators in Russia collaborate with FSB. However, other administrators of “Prometei” managed to quickly delete all subscribers of the old channel and create a new channel – t.me/naroborona. After that FSB started to threaten the presumed administrators of “Prometei”. For example, Russian anarchist Svyatoslav Rechkalov, who has escaped Russia after tortures in Spring 2018, received messages from FSB that contained personal threats to “find him in France and deliver to Russia”.
Later FSB published on Telegram channels administrated by the police, a photo of dead Mikhail Zhlobitsky, disfigured by the explosion. The caption of the photo contained humiliation and mockery, saying “that’s what happens with those who desire anarcho-communism”. The photo was presented as a message to “Narodnaya Samooborona”.
Apparently, FSB is going to use the situation for repressions against the anarchist movement and the “Narodnaya Samooborona”, which is the largest anarchist movement in Russia today. It promotes anarchism in social networks, creating the country’s largest anarchist media resources, and also fights against gangsters and unscrupulous employers. Over the last two years, “Narodnaya Samooborona” organized series of campaigns, and dozens of Russian cities joined them. After the campaign about the “Network” case, organized by the “Narodnaya Samooborona” in February and March of this year, the special services began repressions against the movement. In February, several anarchists were detained in Chelyabinsk, suspected of hanging the “FSB is the main terrorist” banner. Anarchists were detained by FSB special forces, after that they were subjected to torture, during which they were required to confess holding the action. The FSB also tried to proclaim them as the local cell of the “Narodnaya Samooborona” in order to present the movement as an extremist organization, which, according to Russian laws, would allow creating a new large criminal case against the anarchists.
In addition, the repression took place in Moscow on the eve of the presidential election. In February, several anarchists were arrested and incriminated in pogroming the office of the ruling party “Edinaya Rossiya”. In March, on the eve of the elections, special forces and political police conducted an operation against anarchists in Moscow, conducting a series of searches in the homes of anarchists. One of the anarchists, Svyatoslav Rechkalov, suspected by the police of administering the anarchist media Narodnaya Samooborona, was tortured by electroshock. In the course of the torture, he was demanded to recognize himself as the “leader of the anarchists”, the organizer of the “Narodnaya Samooborona” and all the anarchist campaigns carried out recently in the country. During the torture in the department of the political police, he was directly told that the reason for the repression against anarchists were their increased activity and their actions in russian cities.
These are far from the only examples of repression against anarchists this year. Earlier, the FSB fabricated a criminal action in Penza and St. Petersburg, torturing local anarchists and accusing them of creating a terrorist community, the (Network). In February-March of this year, a raid on local anarchists took place in Crimea. Activists also were tortured during raids. One of them, Evgeny Karakashev, is still in jail on indictment of terrorism. Another Crimean anarchist, Alexander Kolchenko,got ten years in jail for one criminal action with director Oleg Sentsov.
In addition, the other day a new criminal action was incriminated for the veteran of the anarchist movement Ilya Romanov. Romanov began his anarchists activity in the times of USSR, and has served several prison terms. Now he is in jail in another term for a terrorism criminal action for a firecracker explosion, fabricated by the FSB. Romanov criticized the rules of the colony in which he is, for that a new criminal action was fabricated against him. The administration of the colony created an account on Facebook with his name, and published on it a video with a call to join ISIS. That was enough for Ilya Romanov to receive a new term in prison.
Initiation of a criminal action is also reported in Chelyabinsk against five anarchists for graffiti against pension reform.
In Irkutsk, trials over the anarchist Dmitry Litvin are continuing, he is accused on the article “insulting the feelings of believers” for publishing a photo, showing the middle finger up on the background of the church, in social network. Raids on the anarchists were hold in Irkutsk last year because of the posting this foto. Apartments of the anarhists were stormed by special forces.
Obviously,due to all these repressions and state terror, the younger generation of anarchists will be aware that there is no difference between armed struggle and legal protest – in any case, you will be called a terrorist and tortured.
It makes young anarchists take up bombs. Unfortunately, the Russian anarchist movement is extremely fragmented and full of conflict, and does not support each other during the repression. Many anarchist movements have already hurried to condemn the young bombers and disown them, saying that they have no relation to anarchism. Previously, repression against many anarchists in Russia were also ignored. Despite the rise in criminal actions and the persecution of anarchists, information about this is increasingly ignored due to personal antipathies and conjuncture considerations.
We call for solidarity with all Russian anarchists subjected to repression – in Penza,St.Petersburg, Moscow, Chelyabinsk, Kaliningrad, Irkutsk and the Crimea. Russia is becoming a terrorist dictatorship and this is already forcing young anarchists to take up the bombs.
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