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‘I Don’t Want to Die’: Harrowing Tales From Russia’s Summer Camp

Of the 47 children and four immature instructors that went boating on June 18, usually 37 came behind alive. Several miles offshore in the solidified waters of a lake in Karelia, northern Russia, dual canoes were held in a charge and capsized. Fourteen children died, carrying drowned or solidified to death.

The boat outing had been orderly by Syamozero Park Hotel, a summer camp, which, among others, hosted orphans and children from troubled families. Government amicable use bodies were among those who had paid for the children’s stay; those that died during the storm were Muscovites, sponsored by the Moscow City Hall’s Department for Labor and Social Security.

Unsurprisingly, courtesy shortly incited to the supervision of the summer camp. Syamozero, was, it turns out, not the most reputable. Some relatives had described it as “hell” and a “concentration camp.” The camp didn’t have a license to organize vessel or hiking trips, and was buried underneath dozens of lawsuits. In 2012, one of its emissary directors was convicted to 12 years in prison for involuntary manslaughter, after he had beaten a staff member to death while drunk.

Despite this, Moscow City Hall did not secrete funding. Indeed, given 2014, City Hall had sealed off on several contracts with the summer camp, profitable a total of 108.7 million rubles ($1.7 million).

The tragedy sparked cheer at the unequivocally top: Both President Vladimir Putin and Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev called for a consummate review into the incident. Punishment for those in charge of the stay and officials concerned in shadowy buying procedures will no doubt be unbending and demonstrative. The camp’s owner, emissary executive and the 3 flourishing instructors have been  detained. The Department for Labor and Social Security was searched by law coercion on June 20.

Early Warnings

Syamozero did have the supporters. Natalya Smirnova, a mother of three, says her daughter favourite it there. “The food was good, and living conditions were fine,” Smirnova told The Moscow Times. “My father and I went there on a weekend and inspected everything. The only thing that kids weren’t propitious with was the weather.” Smirnova’s daughter didn’t attend in the lethal vessel outing since of health issues — she was taken home the day after the tragedy.

Other relatives told a different story. Kristina Nevzorova, whose dual sons were attending the camp, was “shocked” by the stay conditions. “My younger son got terribly ill, and I had to take him home dual weeks ago. And my elder son returned home thin, tired and grim. The day after the tragedy he called me and cried into the phone. ‘Get me out of there,’ he said, ‘I don’t wish to die,'” Nevzorova said.

According to Nevzorova, the children were left to their possess devices. No one paid courtesy to what they were doing, she said. When they went on hiking trips, the young, untrained instructors “barely fed them.”

Another parent, who asked to remain anonymous, pronounced that on the day of the tragedy he perceived a text summary with a storm alert. “I called the camp privately to check with them on whether they had perceived the alert. They positive me they had and promised not to sail any time soon,” he told The Moscow Times.

Local central Andrei Orekhanov, who says he has been “fighting” with the Syamozero administration for years over bad vital conditions, claims the situation at the stay was dangerous. He told the Novaya Gazeta journal that when visiting the camp final year he found damaged tents, soppy linen, and a miss of pillows and mattresses.

“The children cried and asked me to take them home,” Orekhanov said. “They told me they were hungry, soppy and frozen. Many of them were clearly influenced by the cold.”

40 Lawsuits

Syamozero Park Hotel has utterly a rap sheet. According to due industry database SPARK, between 2013 and 2016 the company was concerned in 40 lawsuits. It also underwent 19 inspections by different state watchdogs. The latest one, by a bend of consumer rights watchdog Rospotrebnadzor, took place in June 2016. According to the RBC news agency, that cited misleading supervision sources, this news suggested organizers didn’t have the proper licenses to take vessel or hiking trips.

None of this has stopped Syamozero from winning tenders from Moscow City Hall. In 2014-2015, the usually aspirant was listed as a company called “Karelia Open.” A company with this name is owned by Yelena Reshetova, the owner of Syamozero Park Hotel. “Karelia Open” was many expected a shell association combined for the apparition of competition, though offering pricier services and allowed Syamozero to secure the contract.

It wouldn’t have been tough for Moscow City officials to find all of this out, remarkable Ilya Shumanov, emissary executive of Transparency International Russia, essay on Facebook. It appears that officials did all they could to back Syamozero. A company with such a bad repute couldn’t have won the bid on its own, Shumanov wrote.

It stays misleading what ties Moscow supervision officials have to the owners of the camp, if indeed any. “There aren’t any apparent links,” says Yelena Panfilova, conduct of Transparency International Russia. “But we never know who is whose friend, college alumny, ex-colleague, relations or grandchild.”

“Situations like this — when there’s no apparent affiliation — are widespread in state procurement, and they are the scourge of the system,” Panfilova told The Moscow Times.

The head of Moscow City Hall’s Department for Labor and Social Security, Vladimir Petrosyan, has insisted that the tender was fair. “All their support was in order,” he said. But a cloud of suspicion remains. The Russian Anti-Monopoly Service has betrothed to investigate the tender, and has told RBC that the competition looked like a cartel agreement.

Patchy Regulation

It stays misleading either any find of corruption will lead to systemic changes, or follow the usual Russian settlement of finding scapegoats and parking the problem. According to Panfilova, the tragedy will usually move about change if there is common domestic will once the scandal has died down.

In the meantime, children’s summer camps will sojourn a gray and under-regulated area. According to Irina Volynets, consultant and chair of the National Parents Committee, there are now no protocols surveying who can be an instructor, or who can run a children’s camp.

For Volynets, vulnerabilities are built into the state buying system, that usually looks at the cost when purchasing for summer stay services. “According to existing laws, authorities are thankful to choose the cheapest option, that shouldn’t be the case when we’re articulate about children’s lives.”

On the heels of the tragedy, the government has announced a blanket investigation of all the summer camps opposite the country. This is doubtful to be sufficient, says Volynets, and focuses on consequence, not cause. “What we unequivocally need is a return to uniform reserve standards: They might good check and shut down some camps, though it won’t solve the underlying problem.”

Article source: http://www.themoscowtimes.com/article/573285.html