Strelkov’s Arrest

July 23, 2023
Tatiana Stanovaya

This is a summary of an article originally published at R.Politik.

The author, founder of R.Politik, writes:

  • “On July 21, Igor Girkin (Strelkov), former Minister of Defense of the Russia-declared 'DNR' was arrested under Article 280 of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation (‘on public calls to carry out extremist activities committed with the use of mass media or the Internet’).”
  • “It is the first arrest of a major pro-war blogger by authorities. Strelkov supported the war in Ukraine (and was responsible for the fatal downing of MH17 in 2014) but regularly criticized Russia's military leadership and Vladimir Putin personally. More than 875,000 people subscribe to his Telegram channel.”
  • “The FSB is in favor of a hardline approach toward ‘angry patriots,’ especially figures like Strelkov, who is regarded as a nationalistic ‘Navalny.’ Regardless of the fact that the criminal case was opened by the Investigative Committee, the FSB is behind it. The Ministry of Defense appears to be the main beneficiary of Strelkov’s arrest.”
  • “Many political experts who cooperate closely with the Kremlin were confused that authorities had ignored the problem for so long. One of the main reasons behind this was Putin's personal attitude toward radical patriotic figures: that they are loyal to the state and to Russia, even if extremely critical of authorities. Following [Prigozhin’s] mutiny, the authorities in general and Putin in particular are much less indulgent toward their critics.”
  • “However, unlike the now-destroyed non-systemic liberal opposition, ‘angry patriots’ will not be completely suppressed: the Kremlin still has to deal with the ‘patriotic camp’ as an important part of national political consolidation within the context of its invasion.”

Read the full article at R.Politik.

Photo shared by Dom kobb under a CC BY 3.0 license.