By Tony Winterburn •
Published: 23 Jan 2021 • 13:08
Moscow Police Clash With Navalny Supporters At Rally. image: Twitter
Moscow Police Clash With Navalny Supporters At Rally- Many Arrested.
RUSSIAN POLICE have detained dozens of protesters today, Saturday, as hundreds of supporters of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny took to the streets following his call to protest against President Vladimir Putin’s rule.
Navalny, 44, put out the call for nationwide protests after he was detained last week on arrival to Russia from Germany where he had been recuperating from a near-fatal attack caused by the Soviet-designed nerve agent Novichok.
More than 200 people have so far been detained in central and eastern Russia because of the protests, according to monitoring group OVD-INFO, with more than 100 held in Moscow, according to witnesses, the location for one of up to 70 marches this weekend.
Russian authorities ramped up pressure on Navalny’s aides on the eve of the protests, handing short jail terms and fines to his close associates for violating protest legislation and urging people to take to the streets.
Russia’s media watchdog had also issued a warning to social media platforms that hosted calls for a large turnout at Saturday’s demonstrations. One tweeted video, apparently filmed in Moscow, is said to show an ally of Mr Navalny, the lawyer Lyubov Sobol, being grabbed by police and dragged away while taking part in a TV interview.
Navalny’s arrest sparked sharp condemnation from the leaders of Western countries who echoed calls from the Russian opposition for his release.
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