Massive Anti-Corruption Protests Are Happening All Over Russia
Anti-corruption protests have broken out all over Russia in support of politician Alexei Navalny, President Vladimir Putin’s most vocal critic, who has been detained after recovering from a near-fatal nerve agent attack.
Navalny had been in Berlin recovering from the attack, which took place in Russia last August, until he landed back in Moscow on January 17.
On his arrival, he was immediately taken into custody and found guilty of violating his parole, the BBC reports.
Navalny has accused the Russian authorities of making up a case to silence him, and called on protesters to show their support.
In response, tens of thousands of people all over the country have taken to the streets in protest of the arrest, with more than 2,000 reported to have been detained by authorities.
According to OVD Info, an independent organisation that monitors rallies, upwards of 2,100 people have been arrested at the demonstrations, 700 of them in Moscow.
Among them is Navalny’s wife Yulia, who was reportedly detained at Moscow.
It comes after Russian authorities announced plans to crackdown on unauthorised demonstrations, saying they would be ‘immediately suppressed’.
Protesters were said to have been beaten with batons in Moscow’s Pushkin Square as police fought to disperse crowds.
While Russia’s interior ministry reported 4,000 people had turned out in the capital, reporters on the ground have said the figures are more like tens of thousands.
Protesters were said to be chanting ‘Freedom to Navalny’ and ‘Putin go away’ while police announced, ‘This is an illegal gathering, please leave,’ through loud speakers.
One protester told the BBC she was taking part in the demonstrations because ‘Russia has been turned into a prison camp’ and she wanted to support the country’s highest profile opposition figure, who currently sits behind bars amid all the chaos.
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Most Read StoriesMost Read