Hundreds Detained After Anti-Government Protests Sweep Across More Than 100 Russian Cities
Anti-corruption protests erupted in more than 100 cities in Russia on June 12, with close to a thousand protesters detained in Moscow and St. Petersburg. The rally was this year’s second show of seemingly growing popular discontent over corruption in the Russian government.
The protests, some of the largest since 2011, were sparked by an investigation into government corruption conducted by the team of opposition politician Alexei Navalny. Navalny, who plans to run in Russia’s 2018 presidential election, did not even make it to the rally he helped organized. He was arrested outside his apartment and sentenced to 30 days in jail for disobeying police officers and “repeatedly violating Russia’s laws on public assemblies.”
In a massive and indiscriminate security sweep up, dozens of people were thrown into police police cars and driven away, among them even some unsuspecting onlookers. A video that quickly went viral showed one Putin supporter carried off by riot police as he extolled the Russian president to the bemusement of surrounding anti-government protestors.