The recent assassination of Darya Dugin, the daughter of Putin advisor Aleksandr Dugin may be the mark of an internal and organized uprising in Russia.  A group calling itself the National Republican Army has claimed responsibility for the act and confirmed that Dugin was the target.

Appearing on the TV show, “Utro Fevralya,” former member of the Russian Duma and now exile Ilya Ponomaryov stated the group contacted him through a Telegram channel he created called RosPartizan or “Russian Partisan,” by persons saying they were involved in the “guerilla struggle” against the Putin regime.  Utro Fevralya is a show broadcast somewhere in Europe that presents anti-Putin views and news by Russians. Ponomaryov stated that this group was not members of existing Anarcho-Communist, or other Far Right groups but represented a “new partisan” organization within Russia. In the interview, Ponomaryov said that those who had initially made contact with them were killed by the Russian state security service, the FSB and that his organization had helped them with material support and arranged for the protection of other members.

Ponomaryov himself is considered a fugitive from Russian justice living in Ukraine.  He holds a bachelor’s degree in physics and a Master’s degree in public administration from Moscow University. He worked in the nuclear field briefly and at one time was head of communications for the Communist Party of Russia from 2002-2007.  He has also been the VP of what was then Russia’s largest oil company, Yukos.  In 2007, he was elected to the Duma. His political views are a mix of classic liberalism and socialism. In 2012, he took a leading role in opposition to Putin’s rise to power as president and was the only member of the Duma to vote against Russia’s annexation of Crimea in 2012, believing it would permanently ruin relations with Ukraine and lead to NATO expansion.  He was widely denounced as a traitor and called for his expulsion from the Duma.

While visiting California in 2014, his bank accounts were frozen and he was informed he was barred from returning to Russia because he was under investigation for embezzlement, making it pretty hard for him to mount an effective defense against the charges. While in exile in Ukraine, he has remained a vocal critic of the Putin regime, calling for it to be replaced with an entirely new system that is a mixture of federalism and direct democracy.

Here is a translated statement by the Russian Republican Army below

“We, Russian activists, military and politicians, now partisans and fighters of the National Republican Army, outlaw warmongers, robbers, and oppressors of the peoples of Russia!

We declare President Putin a usurper of power and a war criminal who amended the Constitution, unleashed a fratricidal war between the Slavic peoples, and sent Russian soldiers to certain and senseless death. Poverty and coffins for some, and palaces for others, were the essence of his policy. We believe that disenfranchised people have the right to rebel against tyrants. Putin will be deposed and destroyed by us!

Our goal is to stop the destruction of Russia and its neighbors, to stop the activities of a handful of Kremlin businessmen who have sucked on the wealth of our people and are committing crimes today inside and outside the country. We declare officials of the Government of the Russian Federation and regional administrations to be accomplices of the usurper, those who do not resign their powers will be destroyed by us. We announce businessmen who earn their money on corruption and connections with officials are traitors to the Motherland and accomplices of the usurper.

The property of those who do not repent and do not speak publicly against this government and its war, will be destroyed by us. We declare employees of power structures as accomplices of the usurper. Those who do not lay down their arms and take off their shoulder straps(rank insignia) will be destroyed by us. We declare military cargoes and the cargoes of those who earn money in the war and help it financially legal targets that we will destroy.