Sunday, January 21, 2024

Environment, Housing and War ‘Protest Drivers’ in Russian Regions, Grashchenkov Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Jan. 18 – The Bashkortostan protests show that the potential for mass actions in the regions and republics “has not exhausted itself” and even that such events are likely to increase in the coming months, according to Ilya Grashchenkov, head of the Center for the Development of Regional Policy.

            In fact, despite Moscow’s repression and control of the media, the political scientist says, there are three major “drivers” likely to power more demonstrations and actions across the Russian Federation in the run-up to the presidential elections this spring and gubernatorial ones in the fall (

            These include concerns in the regions about environmental problems including prominently the development of new trash dumps, problems with housing and communal services, and the anger of families of Russian soldiers now serving in Puitn’s war in Ukraine, Grashchenkov says.

            There is little doubt that these three factors are currently the proximate causes of dissent in the regions and republics; but it is striking that the Moscow political scientist who specializes on regional issues does not mention the center’s broad attack on the rights of the federal subjects and the concern of the populations in them about that.

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