Moscow City Court on Thursday sentenced a group of ultranationalist skinheads known as the White Wolves to jail sentences ranging from six to 23 years for a series of race-hate murders.
Investigators say the group, which was formed two years ago on April 20 - the date of Adolf Hitler's birth - was responsible for 11 brutal murders. Police say they filmed their attacks on cell phones and uploaded the footage onto nationalist websites.
Russian media claim the leader of the group was 18-year-old ethnic Georgian Alexei Dzhavakhashvili. He denied the allegation in court.
Russia has seen a wave of racially motivated crimes since the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991. Routine attacks by skinheads and gangs of youths on foreigners and people with non-Slavic features are a regular occurrence in Moscow and St. Petersburg, as well as the city of Voronezh, which hosts many foreign university students.
MOSCOW, February 25 (RIA Novosti)
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The growing outright rivalry between the United States and China gives Russia more foreign policy weight, enabling it to assume the role of a balancer. So far it has been doing so rather skillfully. Today it may participate in a joint naval exercise with China that Beijing positions as outwardly anti-American. But tomorrow it can team up with the naval forces of the Old World.