Two burn themselves in Russian bureaucratic protest

MOSCOW – A MAN burnt himself to death in a Siberian court on Friday, killing a clerk and wounding five people, as another set himself on fire in a clinic, both protesting bureaucratic decisions, a Russian news agency said.

A man in his fifties died after setting himself on fire in the court building in Krasnoyarsk, where a judge was to hear a challenge against a decision to suspend the man’s drivers’ licence, the RIA-Novosti agency quoted a prosecution spokesman as saying.

The fire spread, ‘killing two people, including the perpetrator and a judge’s assistant, and injured five, including an usher and a court administrator,’ a justice spokesman added. All the injured were taken to hospital, one with burns covering 90 per cent of his body.

Meanwhile in Belogorsk in the Russian Far East, a man set himself on fire in a clinic in protest against doctors’ refusal to grant him a disability card, a clinic official told the agency.

‘We explained to him that he had to go through a medical examination, but he did not want to listen,’ said the official, who added the man had visited the clinic often with the same request.

This time, he became angry and splashed gasoline on himself. ‘A secretary and another woman present in the visiting room initially succeeded to prevent him from setting himself on fire and took him out to the hallway, where he repeated his attempt and lit up like a torch.’ The man died of his injuries. — AFP

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