After the recent subway terrorist bombing in St. Petersburg, Russia, police have started racially profiling people from Russia’s north Caucasus and Central Asia. The bomber that killed a dozen people, and injured scores more, was from Dagestan, Russia. Coincidentally, the Boston Bombers were also from this region. Chechnya is also a primary focus. Individuals of this identity are a focus of Russian police, especially around critical infrastructure and other soft targets.
There are reports of increased searches, people being removed from movie theaters, and even people losing their jobs. A 2006 study by the Jurix legal organization found that non-Slavs were almost 22 times more likely to be stopped than ethnic Russians, reports The Moscow Times.
“I have brown hair ,” David says. “And my facial hair is black, which is typical for people from places like Chechnya and Dagestan,” said one man stopped and searched by police in the subway in Moscow, reported The Moscow Times.
“This is a constant campaign,” says Svetlana Gannushkina, chair of the Civic Assistance migration rights organization.
In spite of all of these allegations, stopping a person without suspicion of a crime is still illegal in Russia.