Tourist charged with Nazism rehabilitation after criticizing war memorials in Murmansk

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Konstantin Petrov from Izhevsk where he owns a coffee selling business has been charged with the rehabilitation of Nazism after his words about war memorials in the Murmansk region. The Barents Observer learned this from the regional department of Russia’s Investigative Committee. Its representative confirmed that Petrov is now in the region but would not comment on whether any pre-trial restriction was on the agenda.

Earlier, Petrov became the target of a harassment campaign because of his rude statements that the authorities and society pay too much attention to perpetuating the memory of World War II.

“I wonder when the f*ck we will stop showing monuments, burial grounds, places of some battles, deaths on city tours. A sailor died here, a submariner f***ing died here, someone was bombed here, a city was defended here, f*ck… When the f*ck will we part with this s**t in our minds? How many f***ing years must pass after the Second World War for people who have never f***ing seen this war to stop talking about it? Here is a church, here is a square, everything is in f***ing honor of these f***ing superhuman warriors. Let’s talk about business, about economic growth… Let’s erect monuments to those who invented f***ing franchises. It’s just f***ing nauseating,” Petrov says in a video recorded during a tour of the region.

The video went viral on social media and caused a wide response. Murmansk Governor Andrei Chibis said that Petrov had no place in the region. Russia’s main online censorship campaigner, head of the “Safe Internet League” Ekaterina Mizulina, responded too.

“Why are such inhumans still at large? I believe that on the eve of our great holiday, Victory Day, law enforcement agencies should pay special attention to him,” Mizulina wrote on her Telegram channel.

A local Telegram channel Region 51 disclosed the time of Petrov’s flight home. The car carrying Petrov from Teriberka was stopped by unknown people who, “on behalf of the Murmansk region,” asked the driver to drop the passenger off. These people knew that Petrov was going to the airport and wanted him to walk.

On May 1, the same Region 51 posted two videos in which Petrov apologizes for his words. The first video was recorded near the police station. In the video, he holds his hands behind his back during the recording (possibly handcuffed); the second video was made against the backdrop of a detention cell. Petrov asks for forgiveness from WWII veterans and residents of the Murmansk region, and also thanks the participants in the war in Ukraine, who are now “defending the interests of the Motherland and pursuing the highest values of civil society of the Russian Federation.”

According to Ekaterina Mizulina, Petrov has been charged with the rehabilitation of Nazism in mass media or on the Internet. The punishment for the offense ranges form a fine of up to five million rubles (about €50,000) to up to five years of community service or up to five years in jail.