Some 500 illegal immigrants from Vietnam arrested in Moscow

Russian police have arrested some 500 illegal Vietnamese immigrants in the Moscow Region’s village of Malakhovka, a police source said on Thursday.

The immigrants were illegally employed at a factory involved in sewing coats and jackets.

“Police have detained about 500 people from Vietnam,” the source said. “Numerous violations of immigration laws were revealed on the foreigners.”

The immigrants lived with their families on the premises of the factory where they worked.

Russia has been struggling to cut its inflow of immigrant workers, most of whom arrive to Moscow and other major Russian cities from former Soviet Central Asian republics. Around 10 percent of Russia’s workforce is thought to come from outside the country.

Last month, Moscow police uncovered an “underground town” housing more than 100 illegal immigrants from Central Asia in the capital’s east involved in producing parts for sewing machines.

Moscow Mayor Sergei Sobyanin recently estimated that about two million illegal immigrants were living in Moscow, home to some 15 million people, while the Federal Migration Service argued there were only 340,000 immigrants in the capital, with some 155,000 of them unregistered.

A wave of ethnic tension swept throughout Russia in December last year, with over 5,000 football hooligans and nationalists clashing with police outside the Kremlin walls on December 11.

In order to prevent a repeat of the violence, dubbed a threat to Russia’s national security by President Dmitry Medvedev, the Federal Migration Service has moved to improve the integration of immigrants into Russian society and raise the caliber of foreign workers in the country.

MOSCOW, May 5 (RIA Novosti)

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