MOSCOW, October 28 (RIA Novosti) – Police in Moscow raided a market in the southeast of the city Monday, rounding up around 1,000 laborers from Central Asia for criminal record and migration permit checks.
The raid comes against the backdrop of increased efforts by Russian authorities to clamp down on unauthorized migration and temper the rise of nationalist sentiments.
Interior Ministry spokesman Marat Bugulov said the operation at Sadovod market appeared to have exposed illegal sales of alcohol and counterfeit goods.
Police seized the illegal goods, which also included an unlicensed traumatic pistol, as well as blunt and bladed weapons, Bugulov said.
Bugulov said police will check whether the detained market workers, who come from Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan, are living in Russia legally and whether they’ve been involved in any crimes.
Migrant workers have been the targets of a series of police raids across Moscow in recent months, as public discontent has heated up over rising numbers of foreign workers.
Moscow’s head of police announced in mid-October that police would start conducting weekly operations to round up unauthorized migrants in the capital.