Staunton, April 25 – Russian Prime Minister Mikhail Mishustin has signed an order increasing the salaries of those in the Russian Guard and other organs of internal affairs serving in Moscow and St. Petersburg and in Moscow and Leningrad Oblasts by as much as 100 percent when they are deployed to maintain “public order” (ehorussia.com/new/node/20677).
Mishustin did not explain why he was doing this, but there are two obvious explanations neither of which suggests the situation in the Russian capitals is stable. On the one hand, it may indicate that there is increasing resistance among officers in being used against protesters and that the powers are trying to buy their loyalty.
And on the other, it may mean that the government really expects to face a rising tide of protests in the coming months and wants to ensure that it has enough police power to counter it, especially in the two most important cities about which the powers that be have always been the most concerned.
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