Law enforcement officers detain a man after a rally to demand authorities allow opposition candidates to run in the upcoming local election in Moscow, Russia August 10, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

Protestors defy crackdown in Moscow’s biggest protest for years

Tens of Thousands of protestors in Russia took to the streets of Moscow on Saturday, disobeying a crackdown to demand for free election to Moscow’s City Legislature.
According to The White monitoring group, 60,000 people participated in the demonstration in Moscow, calling it the country’s biggest political protest in eight years – in 2011-2013, protesters took to the streets against perceived electoral fraud. 20,000 police were deployed at the scene.
Police guised with mask surrounded the demonstrators and rounded up scores of people after the demonstration in Moscow, while at another rally in St Petersburg, police detained a leading opposition leader before the rally began.
The demonstrators shouted “down with tsar” waving Russian flags and demanding for free election to Moscow’s City Legislature. They were demanding for allowing opposition minded candidates to run in a city election next month after they were not allowed on the ballot.
President Putin and the Kremlin have so far avoided commenting on the unrest over the Moscow city elections. Putin was shown on state television in a leather jacket at a biker show organized by the Night Wolves motorcycle club on the peninsula of Crimea while the scenes were happening in Moscow.
OVD-Info, a monitoring body, said 245 people were arrested at Saturday’s demonstration in Moscow and 80 in St Petersburg.

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