Anti-corruption protests in Russia. Opposition leader Alexei Navalny arrested
Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev accused of having accumulated huge private fortune. About 5,000 people took part in the Moscow march, 3,500 in St. Petersburg. More than 800 people were arrested in the capital.
Moscow (AsiaNews / Agencies) - Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was sentenced to a 30-day administrative detention for having again violated the law on demonstrations. The activist was arrested yesterday in his Moscow home before anti-corruption demonstrations took place in 169 locations throughout Russia.
Navalny, who intends to run for the Russian presidency next year, was to have participated in yesterday's unauthorized demonstration in the capital, during which more than 800 people were arrested. Authorities say that around 5,000 people took part in the Moscow march, while the interior ministry claimed that around 3,500 people participated in the protests in St. Petersburg and 500 were arrested.
Navalny had invited Russians to take to the streets yesterday - on Russia's National Holiday - to express their anger over alleged corruption at the highest levels in the ruling class. He accuses Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev of having accumulated a great private fortune. Medvedev denies the claims made by his political opponent.
The opposition leader had previously been authorized to hold a rally on Shakarova Avenue, but on the eve of the demonstration he moved it to Tverskaya Street, near the Kremlin, without authorities the permission. The procession was organized to protest the government's plans to demolish some blocks of apartments dating to the Soviet era in the city. Permission had been granted, as was the case for other protests in the country.
The protests coincided with a series of official events, including festivals, concerts and military parades, which take place throughout the country to celebrate Russia Day, the national holiday devoted to the 1990 declaration of sovereignty. These demonstrations attracted thousands of people, including many teenagers. They were the largest national protests since 2012.