A Russian commentator, rigourously defending the archaic system which requires all Russian citizens to be registered at a permanent or temporary place of residence:
But when someone tells that it impede the free movement of labour across the country, you can be sure that he’s lying through his teeth.
Referring to me, as it happens.
Here’s a report dated February 2010 from Russia Today, the state-funded media organisation which sets out to present the Russian government’s point of view on events in Russia and the world:
There are plans to exempt Russians from any type of registration, including “propiska” (permanent registration or residential registration). This revolutionary bill is being prepared by the Federal Migration Service (FMS). The Service explains this initiative with the desire to encourage labor migration and is, at the same time, relying on international experience: without being restricted to their place of residence, people move more freely from “unemployed” regions to places where specialists are in demand.
FMS spokesman, Konstantin Poltoranin, explained this step by saying that Russians will become more mobile in their search for work. Residential registration hinders the ability to move from one region, which lacks jobs (such as a single-industry-towns with one bankrupt enterprise) to another, which needs workers.
So are the Federal Migration Service lying through their teeth, or are they just stating the bleedin’ obvious? Not that this is the first time I’ve encountered a Russian who has mistaken one for the other…