Posted on April 3, 2024

Russia Weighs Tighter Migrant Worker Rules After Moscow Attack

Bloomberg, April 1, 2024

Russia is considering a raft of changes to tighten its immigration laws after Tajik nationals were accused of carrying out the worst atrocity in the capital in more than two decades.

The attack on concert-goers at Crocus City Hall in the Moscow suburbs last month killed more than 140 people. Investigators later found that some of the alleged attackers had expired Russian immigration documents.

Russian authorities have since intensified scrutiny on the legal status of migrant workers across the country, while police have raided facilities run by companies that traditionally employ immigrants, raising concern about a crackdown on citizens of Central Asian countries, according to media reports. More than 20 people were detained after a raid on a warehouse run by online marketplace Wildberries, according to

The Interior Affairs Ministry last week filed a draft law to tighten migration rules, spokeswoman Irina Volk said Monday. Under that bill, foreign workers would need to have a so-called digital profile with biometric data. The number of days that foreigners can spend in Russia without registering with authorities would be cut to 90 days per calendar year from 90 days within a 6-month period currently.

Officials may also create a special government body to manage migrant affairs that will be overseen by the president, Vedomosti newspaper reported, citing several people familiar with the situation. {snip}

The speaker of Russia’s lower house of parliament, Vyacheslav Volodin, has created a working group to analyze changes to migration policy, Tass reported. Vladislav Davankov, deputy chairman of the lower chamber and a presidential candidate in last month’s election, proposed toughening Russia’s migration law “for security reasons.”


Human rights project Department One reported a mass deportation of immigrants from St. Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city, on March 29, seven days after the Crocus City Hall assaults. {snip}