A curious thing has started happening that is unprecedented in Putin’s Russia.
After the bloody beatings on Saturday the police and Omon (special forces used in anti-terrorism) have come in for a verbal beating on account of the failure to observe the law. And some have apparently asked for forgiveness, which does not impress victims like Margarita Yudina who ended up in a St Petersburg hospital besieged by police with bouquets of flowers and heartfelt apologies.
And perhaps the oddest feature of it all is that Nezavisimaya gazeta has come out in support of the curiously Western notion that the forces of public order should actually obey the law like everyone else. “Flowers and apologies are all very well”, the newspaper insists, “but the demands of the law are not set aside.”
Are we about to see Russia beginning to become a “normal” country or is this just a deceptive lull before the incoming storm?
Полицейское насилие не может оставаться без наказания
Цветы и извинения – это хорошо, но требования закона они не отменяют