Rosgvardia: An Overview
The Rosgvardia, or the Russian National Guard, is a security and law enforcement organization in Russia. Established in 2016 by a decree issued by Russian President Vladimir Putin, the National Guard is under the direct command of the President and is tasked with safeguarding public order, combating terrorism and extremism, and participating in territorial defense.
As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, the commander-in-chief of the Russian National Guard is Viktor Zolotov.
The creation of the Rosgvardia consolidated several internal security units under one command, including Internal Troops of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and riot police units (OMON), among others. This move was aimed at increasing efficiency and enhancing control over these crucial security functions.
The Rosgvardia has significant powers, including the authority to search without warrants, restrict movement of individuals, check documents, and use physical force, special means, and weapons when necessary.
In terms of structure, the Rosgvardia is divided into regional commands, special forces units, and educational institutions, among other departments. It comprises both conscripted soldiers and professional military personnel.
In the realm of counter-terrorism and combating extremism, the Rosgvardia plays a significant role, and its units are frequently involved in counter-terrorism operations, particularly in the North Caucasus region.
However, the organization\’s existence and broad powers have also been a source of controversy, with critics suggesting it represents a further centralization of power and could potentially be used to suppress political dissent.