June 01, 2020

Russian Police's Online Flashmob


Russian Police's Online Flashmob
Most of the participants were anonymous. Screen shot by Plokhie Novosti via VK

Former and current police in Russia are showing their support for Vladimir Vorontsov, the administrator of an online community known as Police Ombudsman. Vorontsov posted reports of abuse within the Russian Interior Ministry, and was arrested on May 8 on charges of extortion.

The flashmob in support of Vorontsov features mostly anonymous police officers in their uniforms demonstrating the hashtag #СвободуВоронцову (“Freedom for Vorontsov”) or #ЯМыВоронцов, (“I, we, Vorontsov”). The flashmob’s goal is to halt Vorontsov’s prosecution.

A few of the protesters were not anonymous, and spoke to the human rights outlet Mediazona. According to one officer, “Many support Vladimir anonymously, due to the fact that police officers do not have the legal right to make any kind of criticism or express their personal point of view towards [state] agencies or official representatives.”

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