Power-mad Vladimir Putin has set up a hotline for Russians to report “traitors” who criticise the war in Ukraine.
The Kremlin has reportedly set up a telephone hotline and website that allow “good citizens” to report “traitors” over any potential anti-war sentiments.
Russian authorities have allegedly sent Russian citizens texts with instructions how to report one another, with outspoken voices being tossed in jail, the Daily Mirror reports.
Any Russian wishing to rat out their fellow citizen can also use a dedicated channel on social media.
This led to a young 22-year-old shop assistant spending 24 hours in a cell this week after she told a stranger in Moscow that she disagreed with the war.
The woman told the Sunday Telegraph: “It was just a chit chat… he got very upset that we didn't share his opinion and started arguing, saying that Putin and the war were absolutely right.”
The man was thrown out of the bar but within an hour police arrived and asked for the woman and her friends to go outside.
She claimed that she was tossed in a cell overnight and fined for “discrediting Russian armed forces”.
Alongside that, at a school in the city of Penza, pupils snitched on their own teacher after they secretly recorded her making anti-war comments.
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Other Russians reported on the hotline include a Siberian woman who decorated her tree yellow and blue, the colours of the Ukrainian flag, a man in Moscow who hung a Ukrainian flag from his window and a police officer who was overheard criticising the invasion.
The accounts have been collected by Russian human rights group OVD-Info.
Head of the group's legal department Alexandra Baeva said: “In Russia now, it is like 1937: people are scared and informing on each other.”
The success of such hotlines come less from the people who are reported to it, than the atmosphere of terror and mistrust it creates among the Russian public.
On top of that, the Kremlin remains eager to present the country as behind the invasion, despite 176 people being arrested at 14 separate anti-war protests on Saturday (April 2) alone.
Currently, it is illegal to speak out or even show disapproval of the invasion of Ukraine.
Even calling it a war is currently outlawed as Putin farcically claimed it was a “special operation”.
On March 16, during one of Putin's speeches, he warned “scum” traitors that loyal Russians would “spit them out like a midge that flew into their mouths”.
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