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An agrarian anti-raiding task force – Odessa

August 11, 2017

A reader with a very keen eye will have noticed in a recent post the briefest, but necessary mention of an apparently increasing trend relating to agrarian raiding of small farms.

Such raids can manifest in many ways, from fraudulent documents seizing agricultural land from the rightful owners, to the illicit sale of agricultural equipment, the prevention of access to agricultural land, threats and violence toward farmers and agricultural workers, the theft of harvested crops, or their purchase at far below market value via coercion and/or acts of sabotage or destruction.

Nationally there have been more than 7000 instances (according to an individual who shall not be named but who attempts to monitor these events).

In some instances, the victims have called upon military veterans and civil activists to protect their property and prevent the threats of destruction by paid “rent-a-mobs” under the control of those that would illegally taken control of what is simply not theirs.  Needless to say there have been occasional instances of violence as a result.

It also follows that those that engage in this raiding also expect the courts to rule in their favour and against the interests of the rightful owners – otherwise there would be little point to the raid unless stealing and selling a short-term crop yield was the goal.  Corrupted remains the justice system.

The police, in the absence of physical violence when in attendance generally treat the matter as a civil dispute within which they will not get involved – until fraudulent documents come to light and pressure is brought to bear to do something.

Odessa is no exception to a nationwide problem.

There are a number of criminal proceedings underway regarding raiding upon the small farms across the oblast – particularly in the southwest – raider capture of harvests in Bolgrad, Ananevsky and Tarutino districts are among that number.  (Thus incidents occurring within MP Anton Cisse’s fiefdom that he will assuredly be aware of.)

The issue of agrarian raiding has become a problem in the oblast to the point where a decision has been made to create something akin to an agrarian anti-raiding task force.

Alexander Tereshchuk, Deputy Chairman of the Oblast Rada heads this team, and three mobile units have been created to attend conflicts.  Telephone numbers have been promulgated within local media to report raids (779-40-61, 779-46-91 or 102).

Time will tell if this (necessary) reaction will reduce the number of agrarian raiding incidents or not – for it should be noted, and will come as no surprise, that in numerous cases local village and town officials are involved (on occasion directly and overtly) in the raids.

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