>Red Terror File: Armed FSB agents raid office of Kasparov’s United Civil Front, seize "propaganda materials" on suspicion of "extremist activity"

>The Soviet Union has returned in all but name. That comes next . . .

The Moscow News reports: “According to Kasparov’s website, police officers arrived at his offices shortly after a United Civil Front member encouraged others at a party congress to meet at Kasparov’s headquarters.” This information suggests that an informer might be operating in Kasparov’s party.

“Extremist activity.” A catchall concept that any authoritarian/ totalitarian government can use to suppress dissent. Kasparov’s political website describes the behavior of the police as “boorish” and “threatening.” The great chess champion has apparently met his match in the Kremlin.

Meanwhile, its appetite not satiated by consuming Russia’s independent media, the Kremlin is threatening to sue international journalists for libel should they endeavor to connect the dots between President Putin and the Polonium 210 murder of FSB defector Alexander Litvinenko.

Russian Police Raid Offices of Kasparov-led Opposition Group in Moscow
Moscow News, 12.12.2006

Russian police have seized propaganda materials from the office of the United People’s Front opposition group to check them for extremist content, the Interior Ministry said in a statement Tuesday. Ekho Moskvy radio said the materials are linked to the group’s plan to hold an unauthorized protest march December 16.

Former world chess champion Garry Kasparov, the leader of the United People’s Front, pointed out in comments for Ekho Moskvy that the search was conducted on Russian Constitution Day, December 12.

Denis Bilunov, executive director of the group, told RIA Novosti that policemen “seized several newspapers and other materials for inspection.”

Kasparov told Ekho Moskvy that his office had been raided by armed police officers on suspicion of “extremist activity”. About 20 agents, both from police ranks and the Federal Security Service (FSB), a KGB successor organization, arrived at the Moscow headquarters of Kasparov’s movement Tuesday afternoon, the youngest-ever World Chess Champion told Ekho Moskvy.

The officers demanded staffers turn off computers and mobile phones and took part of the party newspaper’s print run, according to a statement on Kasparov’s website, DPA reports. The search of Kasparov’s office ended after about 2 1/2 hours, the website statement said. It was unclear which court labelled Kasparov’s political activity extremist, or why.

Kasparov, world-famous as the reigning World Chess Champion from 1985 until his retirement in 2005, is one of the organizers of the banned March of the Unwilling. The event was to unite opposition groups, including that of former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov. After banning the march, which had been scheduled for Saturday, Moscow authorities Tuesday gave its organizers permission to hold a stationary demonstration.

Co-organizer Eduard Limonov said he, Kasparov and Kasyanov vowed to hold the march nonetheless. Another march, planned to honour murdered journalists on Sunday, was also banned by Moscow authorities Tuesday, Ekho Moskvy reported.

Moscow City Hall told that march organizers that the event would “violate the constitutional right of non-participants” by taking up space on the street, the prominent liberal broadcaster said. The city instead suggested organizers hold a stationary vigil. The march had been planned for a worldwide day of memory for killed journalists. Russian investigative reporter Anna Politkovskaya was murdered in her apartment building in October; it is still unclear who her killers were.

According to Kasparov’s website, police officers arrived at his offices shortly after a United People’s Front member encouraged others at a party congress to meet at Kasparov’s headquarters. Police showed an order to search the offices in connection with “extremist activity,” Kasparov said.

An outspoken critic of the Russian government, Kasparov has faced physical attacks since retiring from chess, including being beaten over the head with a chess board during a demonstration last year.

One response to “>Red Terror File: Armed FSB agents raid office of Kasparov’s United Civil Front, seize "propaganda materials" on suspicion of "extremist activity"

  1. mah29001 December 12, 2006 at 11:13 pm

    >My guess is that Putin is still trying to be “pro-Western” when he really isn’t. The truth for that matter is many of these Russian Communist factions are just simply birds of a feather, the “former” KGB types like Putin included.

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