Staunton, November 29 – In words that are clearly intended to intimidate but that may have just the opposite effect by exposing official nervousness, Russian Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev says that Moscow is ready to use its internal troops against any Maidan-like activity in any part of the Russian Federation.
The minister told the military council of the commanders of internal forces that their units are “one of the most powerful instruments for opposing the threat of risings like those which have taken place in Ukraine and in other CIS countries” and that he is “certain” that they can succeed in preventing them (top.rbc.ru/politics/28/11/2014/54783443cbb20f1658f7538b).
According to Kolokoltsev, MVD forces under his command are ready to be moved to any region of the country in which such threats appear, something he said could become necessary because those who threaten Russia from abroad are doing what they can to affect its domestic national security as well.
At the meeting, he said that the forces had demonstrated their capacities over the course of the last year by inflicting “significant harm” to the militants in the North Caucasus, providing security for the Olympics in Sochi, and protecting important government facilities against terrorist attack.
And he noted that MVD units had detained more than 850,000 Russians for various legal violations, “including almost 7,000 for crimes.” The larger figure includes those who were arrested and then released for taking part in demonstrations that did not have the approval of the authorities.