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Moscow Authorities Tighten Control Of City Entrances Triggering Fears Of Full Lockdown Of Russian Capital

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Moscow Authorities Tighten Control Of City Entrances Triggering Fears Of Full Lockdown Of Russian Capital

IMAGE: Sergei Bobylev/TASS Host Photo Agency

Following the introduction of a digital pass system to enforce coronavirus lockdown rules in Moscow, local authorities tightened control over the city’s entrances.

According to local authorities, additional security forces were deployed at the entrances to Moscow. They control the movement of cars and check with citizens’ reason for entering the capital. Police added that patrols are being carried in all areas across the capital round the clock.

Russian media report that the city’s  authorities decided to partially restrict entry into Moscow starting from April 11. These reports say that police officers stop cars heading to the capital and check drivers’ reasons for the ‘violation of the self-isolation regime’. Then, the collected data is provided  to local police departments and Rospotrebnadzor (the Federal Service for Surveillance on Consumer Rights Protection and Human Wellbeing).

Reports say that a part of drivers will be forced to turn around, but there are no instructions to close the city yet.

“Crews were informed about the registration scheme for citizens and instructions,” one of the soruces quoted by media says, adding that attempts of people to ask ‘too many questions’ will be mentioned in protocals as “disobedience”.

Therefore, while Moscow remains formally open, the entrance into the capital was in fact limited. Local authorities do not provide criterias that they use to allow or not allow people entering the city. Every day, the declared ‘self-isolation regime’ is becoming closer and closer to the regime of ‘home arrest’ for the city’s residents. Despite this, the state of the emergency in the region has not been declared. This causes among the local population reasonable questions regarding the legal grounds for such actions and real motives of local authorities.

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