Sunday, March 3, 2024

KPRF Now has Special Staff for Organizing Protests

Paul Goble

Staunton, Feb. 28 – While the KPRF is fully integrated into Putin’s system as “a systemic party” and cannot allow itself to engage in protests of any kind about him or his war in Ukraine, it continues to support demonstrations on economic and ecological issues in regions outside of Moscow and even has a special staff to promote such activities.

“Few people know that the KPRF leadership has created an All-Russian Headquarters of Protest Movements,” not only to promote its own candidates but to support protest moves by others as part of its effort to maintain the notion that it is an opposition part, Ilya Shablinsky says (

The former professor at Moscow’s HSE points out that communist activists “regularly take part in various low-profile protest actions at the regional level,” actions that like others at that level “are rarely covered by the mainstream media” in Moscow. Among them were actions last year in Chita, Tomsk, Kirov and Penza.

In the period since then, the party has applied for official approval for demonstrations but generally been refused. But in the regions, Shablinsky says, “it is still possible to discuss real problems such as rising prices and utility charges, low wages, environmental issues, and other [non-political] questions.”

The KPRF appears less and less likely to push the edge of the envelope it is trapped in as long as Putin continues to tighten the screws on Russian society; but the existence of this tradition and even more of this staff in central office suggests that the party may be prepared to adopt a more forward policy when and if conditions make that possible.

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