Staunton, February 8 – Last May, the FSB closed down seven underground arms manufacturers in the Russian Federation (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2020/05/fsb-identifies-and-closes-down-seven.html), and at the end of the year, the Duma moved to tighten rules governing private gun ownership there (windowoneurasia2.blogspot.com/2020/11/duma-moves-to-tighten-controls-on.html).
But despite those moves, the demand for guns outside of the rules established by the Russian government, rules that have nonetheless allowed more than 25 million guns in private hands by some estimates, the problem of the illegal supply of guns to the population appears to be increasing.
The FSB has just announced that its officers have identified and closed down 28 underground arms manufacturers, and its listing of the weapons being made suggests Russians have been purchasing ever more lethal weapons in recent months (fsb.ru/fsb/press/message/single.htm%21id%3D10439160%40fsbMessage.html).
Undoubtedly, most such guns go to people who want guns for legitimate purposes like self-defense or illegitimate ones like crime. But at a time of rising tensions between the siloviki and the population, the spread of gun ownership increases the risk that some people will respond to the authorities by using guns or that the authorities will act on the assumption that is possible.
In either case, the threats to social stability from this quarter appear to be on the rise.