Thousands in Russian Federation protest corruption, hundreds arrested

Mar 27, 2017, 00:30
Thousands in Russian Federation protest corruption, hundreds arrested

Russian authorities detained hundreds of anti-corruption protesters and arrested the nation's leading opposition figure Sunday, as the biggest demonstrations against the Kremlin since 2011 broke out in several cities around the nation.

These protests are the largest coordinated outpourings of dissatisfaction in Russian Federation since the massive demonstrations in 2011 and 2012 that followed what critics believe were fraud-tainted parliamentary elections.

RT said some 8,000 people had taken to the streets of the Russian capital for the demonstration, while police using loudspeakers called on them to disperse.

Local media in one far eastern city reported up to 40 arrests had been made there.

Alexei Navalny called for the nationwide protests after he published reports claiming that Mr Medvedev controlled mansions, yachts and vineyards through a shadowy network of non-profit organisations.

Organizers have said they hope to hold rallies in 98 cities and towns across Russian Federation.

Protesters plan to hold unsanctioned rallies in Moscow and St. Petersburg later in the day.

Police detain a protester in downtown Moscow, Russia, Sunday, March 26, 2017. The one-hectare (2.5-acre) Pushkin Square was densely crowded as were sidewalks on the adjacent Tverskaya Street.

He is barred from running for president against Vladimir Putin next year after being found guilty in a case he said was politicised.

Riot police clashed with demonstrators.

The luxuries amassed by Medvedev include a house for raising ducks, so many placards in Sunday's protests featured mocking images of yellow duck toys.

"People are unhappy with the fact that there's been no investigation" of the corruption allegations, said Moscow protester Ivan Gronstein.

Some demonstrators showed up with their faces painted green, a reference to a recent attack on Navalny in which an assailant threw a green antiseptic liquid onto his face.

There were no comments reported from Putin, Medvedev or other top Russian politicians, leaving in doubt what the Kremlin's strategy may be for countering the protests. Dozens were reportedly arrested around the country.

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