Police of Russia

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The Police
Police emblem of Russia.svg
Russian police Emblem
Нагрудный знак сотрудника Полиции.jpeg
Russian Police badge
Motto Служим России, служим закону!
We serve Russia, we serve the law!
Agency overview
Formed March 1, 2011
Preceding agencies
Employees 904,871 (2016)
Jurisdictional structure
National agency
(Operations jurisdiction)
Operations jurisdiction RUS
Map of Russian districts, 2016-07-28.svg
Map of the Federal districts of Russia
Size 17,075,400 km2
Population 143,030,106[1]
Legal jurisdiction Federal law "On police"
Governing body Ministry of Internal Affairs (Russia)
Constituting instrument
  • Law "On Police"
General nature
Operational structure
Overviewed by State Duma's Security Committee
Headquarters Zhitnaya 6, Okhotny Ryad, Moscow

Appointment by the President of Russia responsible
Parent agency MVD
  • November 10, 1918

Police (Russian: полиция, tr. politsiya, IPA: [pɐˈlʲitsɨjə]) is the federal law-enforcement agency in Russia, operating under the Ministry of Internal Affairs. It was established in 2011, replacing the Militsiya, the former police service. It is the federal police service of Russia that operates according to the law on police (Закон "о полиции"),[2] as approved by the Federal Assembly, and subsequently signed into law on February 7, 2011 by then President of the Russian Federation, Dmitry Medvedev.


Russian Policeman on duty. Russian postcard, early 20th century.

The police force in Saint Petersburg was established as the Main Police on June 7, 1718 by decree from Peter the Great. Anton de Vieira was appointed as the first General Polizmeister.

On January 19, 1722 the Governing Senate established the Moscow Police. The Detective Department was founded in 1866 operating under the Police Department of MVD, and by 1907 similar departments had been created in other major cities of the Russian Empire, including Moscow, Kiev, Riga, Odessa, Tiflis, Baku and Rostov-on-Don. Other districts were policed by rural police or gendarmerie units.

The 3,500 strong police force of Petrograd provided the main opposition to the rioting which marked the initial outbreak of the February Revolution. After the army units garrisoning the city defected, the police became the main target of the revolutionaries and a number were killed. The Police of the Russian Empire was dissolved on March 10, 1917, and on April 17 the Provisional Government established the People's Militia (Militsiya) as a new law enforcement body.

2011 Police reform

Police officer, 2018
Summer uniform of a Russian police officer
Rashid Nurgaliyev, former Russian Minister for Internal Affairs (2003-2012), who led the dissolution of the Militsiya.

Russian police reform (Закон РФ "о полиции" (Zakon RF "O politsii" {Law on police}) is an ongoing effort initiated by former President Dmitry Medvedev to improve the efficiency of Russia's police forces, decrease corruption and improve the public image of law enforcement. On 7 February 2011, amendments were made to laws on the police force, the criminal code and the criminal procedure code. The amendments came into force on 1 March 2011. These changes stipulate a personnel cut of 20% in law enforcement, a renaming of Russian law enforcers from "militsiya" (militia) to "politsiya" (police), substantial increases in wages, centralization of financing, and several other changes. Around 217 billion rubles ($7 billion) have been allocated from the federal budget to finance the reform.

Main changes and aims of the reform

  • Name change. Under the reform, the name of Russian law enforcers was changed from the Soviet-era term "militsiya" (militia) to the more universal "politsiya" (police) on 1 March 2011.[3][4]
  • Personnel reduction and salary increase. The number of police officers will be reduced by 20%, dropping from 1.28 million to 1.1 million by 2012. The reduction will be accomplished via a comprehensive evaluation of all officers. The evaluation will be conducted before June 2011, and those failing the evaluation will end up losing their jobs. All officers who in the past have received administrative penalties or who have links to the criminal underworld will be fired.[5] For those officers surviving the reduction, salaries will be increased by 30%.
  • Centralisation. As a result of the reform, the Russian police will be made a federal-level institution, with funding accomplished fully from the federal budget. Under the old system, police units responsible for public order and petty crimes were under the jurisdiction of regional and city authorities, financed from regional budget and responsible more to the regional governors than to the federal center.[6]
  • Changes to police and detainee rights. According to the new law, the detainee will receive a right to make a telephone call within 3 hours of the detention. They will also receive the right to have a lawyer and interpreter from the moment of their detention, and police must inform the detainee of their rights and duties. The police will lose its right to carry out and demand checks of a company's financial and business activities. Police may also no longer detain a citizen for an hour just to verify his identity.[7]

Central administration

  1. Criminal Police Service: Criminal Investigations Department (Russian: Уголовный розыск)
    • Main Office for Criminal Investigation
    • Main Office for Combating Economic and Tax Crimes (Russian:Отдел борьбы с экономическими преступлениями)
    • Office for Operational Investigation Information
    • Co-ordination Office of Criminal Police Service
    • Main Office for Public Order Maintenance
    • Main Directorate for Road Traffic Safety (Traffic police) (Russian: Государственная инспекция безопасности дорожного движения)
    • Main Office of the Interior for Restricted Facilities
    • Main Office of Interdepartmental Security Guard Service
    • Co-ordination Office of Public Security Service
    • Main Office of the Interior for Transport and Special Transportation
    • Office for Passports and Visas
    • External Labour Migration Department
    • Legal Office
    • Office for Crisis Situations
    • Office for Resource Provisions
    • Finance and Economy Office
  2. Logistical Service
    • Office for Material and Technical Support
    • Finance and Economy Department
    • Medical Office
    • Office for Communication and Automation
    • Office for Capital Construction
    • Co-ordination Office of Logistical Service
    • General Services Office
  3. Independent Divisions
    • Office of Affairs - the Secretariat
    • Main Office for Internal Security -Internal affairs
    • Control and Auditing Office
    • MVD Inquiry Committee
    • Forensic Expertise Center
    • Main Office for Organization and Inspection
      The MVD Inspector General
    • Main Office for (Special) Investigations
      Special branch
    • National Central Bureau for Interpol
    • Mobilization Training Office
    • Main Center for Information
    • Main Legal Office
    • Office for International Co-operation
    • Office for Information Regional Contacts
    • Main office for Drug Enforcement (former FSKN)
    • Main office for Migration issues (former Federal Migratory Service)



A police car, 2018.
Ka-226 of the Moscow Police Service in flight, 2008

Russian police use a number of different models of automobiles which range greatly in age and technical specification.

Patrol Cars


All Terrain Vehicles

Armoured vehicles


Rank insignia

The Russian Police do not use the rank of Corporal.

Private Staff Junior Supervising Staff
Shoulder insignia
for everyday uniform
Russian police private.png Russian police junior sergeant.png Russian police sergeant.png Russian police senior sergeant.png Russian police master sergeant.png Russian police warrant officer.png Russian police senior warrant officer.png
Rank Police Private Police
Junior sergeant
Police Sergeant Police
Senior sergeant
Police Starshina Police Praporshchik Police
Senior praporshchik
Medium Supervising Staff Senior Supervising Staff Supreme Supervising Staff
Shoulder insignia
for every day uniform
Russian police junior lieutenant.png Russian police lieutenant.png Russian police senior lieutenant.png Russian police captain.png Russian police major.png Russian police lieutenant colonel.png Russian police colonel.png Russian police major general.png Russian police lieutenant general.png Russian police colonel general.png Russian police general 1.png
Rank Police
Junior lieutenant
Police Lieutenant Police
Senior lieutenant
Police Captain Police Major Police
Lieutenant colonel
Police Colonel Police
Major General
Lieutenant General
Colonel General
General of the Police of the Russian Federation

It should also be noted that there is a 4 star police rank, General of the Police of the Russian Federation, (Генерал полиции Российской Федерации). The rank is only newly established.

See also


  1. ^ 2012 estimate
  2. ^ "Закон РФ "О полиции", N 3-ФЗ".
  3. ^ "Police reform: easy rebranding followed by complicated actions". Russia Today. 18 March 2011.
  4. ^ "Bill Backed by Kremlin Gives Police Officers 'Manna'". The Moscow Times. 23 March 2011.
  5. ^ "Russia's rebranded police initiated with major layoffs". Russia Today. 1 March 2011.
  6. ^ "Russia Profile Weekly Experts Panel: Will Police Reform Result in Name Change Only?". Russia Profile. 27 August 2010. Archived from the original on 11 July 2011.
  7. ^ "Changes to the law "On police"". RIA Novosti. 2010-11-01.

External links

  • Russian Federation: New Law on police
  • Russian police: to be given new disguise or actual reform?
  • Police of the Russian Federation. Without money, without gifts and without days off[permanent dead link]
  • Russian Federation "Law on police"
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