MOSCOW, February 25 (Itar-Tass) –- Refusal of the organizers of the Rally for Decent Elections to hold the action March 5 in an alternative area and not at the downtown square they insist on is an act of intransigence, Moscow City’s Deputy Mayor Alexander Gorbenko said Saturday.
“Lubyanskaya Square /the central square slightly more than a kilometer away from the Kremlin – Itar-Tass/ isn’t a good place for the huge crowds of people,” Gorbenko said. “An application that has been filed mentions /the projected participation of/ 10,000 people but no one can say in reality how many people will come.”
“If the actual number of participants exceeds the figure, the place will be closed for traffic,” he said adding that the application has been filed for the evening hours of March 5 and this will be a weekday.
“The whole thing is simply unrealistic even if there will really be 10,000 people there and the organizers know this perfectly well,” Gorbenko said.
He recalled that the authorities had offered three traditional routes typically used by the organizers of marches, manifestations and so on. One of them terminates at Bolotnaya Square, “just a hundred meters away from the Kremlin.”
“They’ve taken an incorrect stance,” Gorbenko said. “The city always did its best to meet them halfway. We always found common language with them and in this situation I don’t see any reasons either for this sort of intransigence on their part and for a refusal to come to Bolotnaya Square.”
“This is an attempt to provoke something,” he said in an interview with the Echo of Moscow radio.
Earlier, Moscow mayoralty issued an official denial to the request to hold the rally on Lubyanskaya Square. It offered the organizers to relocate their action alternatively to Bolotnaya Square, Taras Shevchenko Embankment or Poklonnaya Hill.