Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Putin gives senior Urals post to factory worker

Russian President Vladimir Putin gave a tank factory worker from the Ural Mountains region a senior government position on Friday.

Igor Kholmanskikh, a section head at the tank-building Uralvagonzavod factory in Nizhny Tagil, will be the presidential envoy to the Ural Mountains region and will help to protect workers' interests. In December, Kholmanskikh offered to come to Moscow to disperse anti-Putin protests, Associated Press' reports.

Kholmanskikh became known to the public after denouncing anti-Putin protestors during a live TV program. He said that he and his colleagues would help to remove demonstrators from the street if police were unsuccessful. In March, Putin won a third presidential term, despite protests against his rule that drew more than 100,000 people to Moscow's streets.

The day before Putin's May 7 inauguration, a protest of 20,000 demonstrators turned into an intense battle with police. Dozens were injured in fights between tear gas and truncheon armed police and stone- and bottle-throwing protestors. Police rounded up hundreds of opposition activists on the streets and in cafes over the next few days, according to Associated Press.

The opposition set up a camp in central Moscow that lasted for a week before it was dispersed by police on Wednesday. The protestors set up a new camp across the capital that has survived through detentions and police raids.