‘Hundreds arrested’ in pro-Navalny protests across Russia
Yulia Navalnaya joined a rally in Moscow – where police sealed off pedestrian access in areas and shut down metro stations – where she counted among the 500 detained.
Rallies are being held across the country for the second weekend in a row after the opposition leader was arrested earlier this month upon his return to the capital, having spent months in Germany recovering from a poisoning.
Authorities warned rallies were not authorised and would be broken up, as they were last weekend – when more than 4,000 people were detained, according to OVD-Info, and tens of thousands took to the streets.
Demonstrations took place hundreds of miles apart, with protesters rallying in support of Mr Navalny in cities in Siberia, as well as in Moscow and St Petersburg.
Mr Navalny is accused of parole violations which he has claimed are trumped up. A court is due to meet next week to consider handing him a jail term of up to three and a half years.
Videos circulating on social media show police striking protesters:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 13:52
More than 3,000 detained – monitoring group
The number of people detained in today’s protests has now passed 3,000, according to a monitoring group.
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 13:39
Man sets himself alight – Interfax
A news agency has reported a man has set himself on fire in Moscow:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 13:24
‘Quite funny – and brave’
In St Petersburg, protesters have been filmed clapping along with police making noise:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 13:22
Protests across the country
Thousands have protested across Russia’s vast expanse today, including in:
In the capital, hundreds marched across the city centre.
Crowds chanted “Putin, resign!” and Putin, thief!” in reference to an opulent Black Sea estate reportedly built for the Russian leader, which was featured in a widely popular video released by Alexei Navalny’s team.
Protesters later moved to the Matrosskaya Tishina prison where Mr Navalny is being held, but were met by riot police who pushed the march back and chased protesters through courtyards.
In this city in eastern Siberia, one of the biggest rallies took place, with several thousand people marching across the city.
More than 100 protesters have been detained.
An estimated 2,000 marched across Russia’s second-largest city.
Occasional scuffles erupted as some demonstrators pushed back police who tried to make detentions.
In the far eastern port city on the Pacific Ocean, at least 120 people were detained after protesters danced on the ice and rallied in the city centre.
Additional reporting by AP
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 13:17
Thousands have taken to the streets in Russia for the second weekend straight over the arrest of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.
The fierce critic of Vladimir Putin was detained by police in mid-January after returning to Moscow, five months after a near-fatal poisoning. He accuses Mr Putin of ordering his murder, which the Kremlin denies.
On his return, Mr Navalny was jailed for 30 days on the request of Russia’s prison service, which alleged he had violated the probation of his suspended sentence from a 2014 money-laundering conviction that he has rejected as political revenge.
A court is due to meet next week to consider handing him a jail term of up to three and a half years.
Here is what happened when he was arrested after landing in Moscow earlier this month:
Additional reporting by AP
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 12:45
More than 2,000 arrested – monitoring group
More than 2,100 people have now been detained in total by Russian police at unauthorised protests across the country on Sunday, according to a protest monitoring group.
OVD-Info regularly update their figure online, which is the big number in red on this website:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 12:41
Second weekend of protests
Rallies are being held across the country for the second weekend in a row to demand the release of Alexei Navalny, the jailed opposition leader.
Tens of thousands took to the streets in dozens of cities last weekend to protest against the poisoning and imprisonment of the Kremlin critic.
Journalists and photographers were among thousands arrested nationwide, often violently, by Saturday evening, according to the OVD-Info protest monitor group.
Oliver Carroll reported on the protests last weekend:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 12:26
Protesters take to ice
Over in Russia’s far east, protesters have shown their support for Alexei Navalny while out on ice:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 12:15
You can keep up to date with what is happening on the ground by watching live footage here on Independent TV:
Zoe Tidman31 January 2021 12:07