Eight detained after Russian nationalists attack `foreigners`: Police
Russian police said they had detained eight Russian nationalists for assaulting "foreign-looking" people during a march down a central Saint Petersburg street on Sunday.
Saint Petersburg: Russian police said they had detained eight Russian nationalists for assaulting "foreign-looking" people during a march down a central Saint Petersburg street on Sunday.
Apparent marchers attacked shops and threw stones and smoke-bombs, said local news website fontanka.Ru. Quoting witnesses, it put the number of people held at 16.
One victim suffered an injury to his head, possibly after being beaten with a baseball bat, and was taken away by ambulance, said the website.
Demonstrators roughed up at least two people who did "not look Slav", Itar-Tass news agency quoted another police source as saying.
A police officer told that "eight people were detained for disorderly conduct" during the march that had been joined by about 150 young men and women.
"They attacked passers-by," said one officer.
The march in Russia`s former imperial capital came amid rising xenophobia in Russia targeting mainly migrants from former Soviet republics in the southern Caucasus and Central Asia.
Rights activists have repeatedly warned of a surge in xenophobia, and more and more Russians sympathise with the nationalist cause.
President Vladimir Putin, who has been accused of doing nothing to stop ultra-nationalism, has not publicly commented on riots that erupted on October 13 over the killing several days earlier of a 25-year-old man who was stabbed to death in front of his girlfriend.
The killer fled the scene but police later arrested a suspect from Azerbaijan.