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MOSCOW, June 29 (Itar-Tass) —— Clashes between the participants in the May 6 March of Millions in Moscow and the police could not be described as riots, Russian Human Rights Ombudsman Vladimir Lukin said in a statement posted on his official website.
“No matter what we think about the events on Bolotnaya Square on May 6, 2012, it is my duty to attest that those events were not riots simply because there are no riots unless there are signs of riots listed in the law,” he said.
Riots imply violence as regards civilians, pogroms, arsons, property damage, use of firearms and explosives and armed resistance to the police, he said.
“At the same time, the ombudsman and a group of his staff members who were presented on Bolotnaya Square on May 6, 2012, did not see any of the aforesaid actions,” he said.
Lukin compared the conduct of the Russian Investigation Committee with the actions of the Belarusian judiciary as regards the Belarusian opposition and Russian citizens detained at a Minsk rally 18 months ago. “It seemed immediately after the Belarusian events that the aforesaid methods would be a good lesson of how one cannot use the law. Regretfully, something similar is being done in Russia in the investigation of the actions of the participants and organizers of the rally on Bolotnaya Square in Moscow on May 6, 2012,” the ombudsman said.
He wondered “what norms of law the Russian Investigation Committee spokesman was being guided with when he publicly offered everyone who recognized oneself on videos from Bolotnaya Square to surrender to the police.” “As far as I know, the criminal law in Russia binds the investigation of a culpability of a particular person for a particular deed in a particular situation. All the rest evidently goes beyond the legal framework,” Lukin said.