[Associated Press Newswires | 23 June 2007 | By MIKE ECKEL ] MOSCOW (AP) – Dozens of Russians brawled with people from the Caucasus and Central Asia in what Moscow police said Saturday was a coordinated attack by anti-immigrant and right-wing activists. Nearly four dozen people were detained and one person was hospitalized.
The violence Friday night was the latest incident involving hate crimes or attacks targeting foreigners in Russia, particularly dark-skinned immigrants from poorer regions and republics of the former Soviet Union. Many Russian regions are plagued by tensions between ethnic Russians and minority groups, especially those from Chechnya and the Caucasus.
Moscow city police spokesman Anatoly Latovetsky said in televised comments that anti-immigrant and right wing activists were behind the running battles that took place Friday in three locations in the Russian capital. The groups specifically targeted people from the Caucasus, such as from Chechnya, Azerbaijan or Armenia, he said.
One ethnic Armenian man was hospitalized with stab wounds, he said.
Russians, Caucasus natives brawl in Moscow; police say right-wing groups sparked fight