Demonstrators were detained in several Russian cities during demonstrations in support of opposition politician Alexei Navalny on Saturday despite an official ban.
Photo: Natalia KOLESNIKOVA / AFP
OVD-Info, which specializes in monitoring official action against political movements, produced 3,134 people by 12 midnight on Saturday, including 1,201 in Moscow and 471 in St. Petersburg, a daily record since the group began operations in late 2011.
Protesters broke through the cordon in both major cities, and police used force. Julija Navalnaya, the wife of an opposition politician, was temporarily detained in the capital.
News agencies learned that about forty police officers were injured in Moscow. The Russian Investigation Commission (SC) has launched an investigation into the matter. A car with an official license plate was damaged by protesters.
According to press reports, tens of thousands, including 110,000, funded by Mikhail Khodorkovsky’s emigrant Russian opposition politician, took part in the movements, which spanned more than 110 cities, some 60 Russian and 50 foreign. Demonstrations began in the Far East, reaching the settlements of Siberia and the Urals, and then to Moscow and St. Petersburg. Previously, they had never participated in so many street movements in support of Navalny outside the current and former capitals.
According to the Russian Interior Ministry, four thousand people gathered in Pushkin Square in downtown Moscow in the early afternoon, but the Reuters news agency claimed that there were ten times as many participants in the movements in the capital. The press reports also mentioned tens of thousands of movements from St. Petersburg and Yekaterinburg.
In several places, protesters have complained about the slowdown in mobile internet, but service providers say it can only be a local congestion due to the myriad of live broadcasts on smartphones.
Leonid Volkov, leader of the Navalny regional tribes, said there would be protests next weekend as well. This, according to observers, means that the supporters of the arrested Russian politician are trying to shape the events in Moscow according to the “Belarusian scenario”.
Authorities have already detained well-known opposition figures before Saturday’s protests, with the aim of organizing unauthorized demonstrations or inciting juveniles. Several of them were remanded in custody or fined.
Social media providers have been called in recent days to remove protesting incitement entries that are considered illegal by official bodies. Authorities recalled that there is a ban on assembly due to the coronavirus epidemic. The Ministry of Education has called on parents to keep their children away from the movements and to organize a joint family program for Saturday.
In a Telegram entry on Friday, the Russian Foreign Ministry complained that the U.S. embassy in Moscow had posted on its website detailed information on the locations and dates of the planned protests, which the ministry said exceeded the warning needed to protect its own citizens. The Russian portfolio called on the United States to stop interfering in internal affairs.
Foreign spokeswoman Marija Zaharova, speaking to the HCLU on Saturday, said US diplomats should explain to Moscow why they had announced the route of the protests and why the idea of ”marching against the Kremlin” had been thrown into the public consciousness when the organizers had no such plan. . He raised what would have happened if the Russian embassy in Washington had released a similar map, claiming that the protesters were targeting the Capitol.
In the evening, the Moscow diplomatic ministry issued a statement saying that American diplomacy’s attempts to incite the most radical elements to virtually violent action were doomed. The ministry warned that what had happened would have negative consequences for bilateral relations. He claimed this was not the first time the U.S. embassy had violated the rules and norms of diplomacy.
The U.S. mission on Saturday described the detentions as a violation of the right to freedom of expression and condemned them.
Navalny, held in solitary confinement, posted a video message on Instagram on Friday stating that he was psychologically balanced and did not address the idea of suicide.
The protests were announced by activists after Navalny, who returned home from medical treatment in Berlin, was detained late at Moscow Airport on the evening of January 17, claiming that he had violated his obligation to leave his residence. About the court hearing the next day, which ordered the 30-day pre-trial detention of the politician, Navalny himself called on his followers to protest on social media.
Navalny was treated in Germany because on August 20, several Western laboratories unanimously claimed that he had been poisoned in Siberia with a neurotoxin belonging to the “Novics” group. Moscow denies this, refusing to launch an investigation into the case until it receives evidence from the prosecutors.
The Navalny-based Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK) on Tuesday released a two-hour documentary alleging that President Vladimir Putin had built a secret estate worth 100 billion rubles (about 400 billion forints) on the Black Sea coast near the resort town of Gelendzhik. The English subtitled material was viewed on YouTube by more than 74 million by Saturday midnight.
Source: Propeller – Saját anyagok by propeller.hu.
*The article has been translated based on the content of Propeller – Saját anyagok by propeller.hu. If there is any problem regarding the content, copyright, please leave a report below the article. We will try to process as quickly as possible to protect the rights of the author. Thank you very much!
*We just want readers to access information more quickly and easily with other multilingual content, instead of information only available in a certain language.
*We always respect the copyright of the content of the author and always include the original link of the source article.If the author disagrees, just leave the report below the article, the article will be edited or deleted at the request of the author. Thanks very much! Best regards!