A week of deserting Russia

By Slava Tsukerman

Prominent Russian economist Sergei Guriev fled from Russia to France a week ago in fear of being prosecuted. His flight was considered by many as a turning point in Russian history. Indeed, during the week that passed since Guriev’s flight, several other famous Russians followed his example.

The most shocking statement was made by Gary Kasparov, the former World Chess Champion and a leader of Russian opposition. Receiving in Geneva the 2013 Morris B. Abram Human Rights Award from UN Watch, Kasparov announced: “Right now I have serious doubts that if I return to Moscow I may be allowed to travel back. So, for the time being, I refrain from returning to Russia.”

Here is the video of Garry Kasparov’s speech made at UN Press Conference on June 4.

Also this week one of the most influential Russian journalist, who in the past helped to create top TV stations of the country, Eugenie Kiselev, publicly requested that the president of Ukraine grant him Ukrainian citizenship.

During an interview this week on Latvian Radio Baltcom, a famous Russian film star Leonid Yarmolnik shared the following: “I will tell you a secret, I’m almost a citizen of Latvia. I have a residence permit. I recently received it, and I am very proud of it. I love Riga… My brains rest here.”

This week Levada Center, published results of the new poll concerning emigration from Russia. According to the poll, 22% of Russians would like to take up permanent residency abroad.

The highest percentage of those who would like to leave is among the students (45%) and businessman (38%). Also 33% of employees and 28% of housewives consider emigration.

70% of those surveyed said they are going to stay in Russia. Residents of Moscow and other big cities are more likely to think about emigrating (27%).

Asked about the possible causes for emigration, 49% of respondents said the main motivation of this decision is their desire for better living conditions; 32% are dissatisfied with the Russian unstable economic situation; and 31% are willing to move in order to provide children with dignified and secure future.

18% of respondents said their reason for thinking about emigrating Russia is a lack of protection from the authorities and officials, 10% do not like the political situation, and 14% are dissatisfied with the conditions of doing business in Russia.

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Updated: June 12, 2013 — 4:17 pm

1 Comment

  1. No mention of corruption or persecution, or was that too dangerous a thing to ask in a poll?

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