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Number of oppositionists detained in downtown Moscow exceeds 100

May 31, 2012, 23:34 UTC+3

About 150 people took part in the unauthorized action

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MOSCOW, May 31 (Itar-Tass) — Number of political opposition activists detained on Moscow's downtown Triumfalnaya Square during an action in support of Article 31 of the Constitution has exceeded a hundred people, a spokesman for the press service of the Moscow City Interior Department said.

"A group of opposition-minded citizens tried to impede the entry to and exit from the Mayakovskaya metro station and members of nationalistic groupings joined the unauthorized action," he said. "The total number of the detainees is about 120."

“About 150 people took part in the unauthorized action, which unfolded in the presence of about 200 reporters and bloggers who had come to the site to cover the event,” a source of Moscow City’s Interior Department told Itar-Tass.

Opposition spokespeople said two notable individual were detained on Triumfalnaya Square. One of them is the famous Soviet-era nonconformist and dissent, Eduard Limonov, and the other is Konstantin Kosyakin, an activist of the Levy Front /Left-Wing Front/ movement.

The opposition also claimed that one of the detainees was a fourteen-year-old boy.

The 31st day of every month has become a traditional date, on which the off-parliament opposition factions try to hold an action on Triumfalnaya Square in support of Article 31 of the Constitution.

Moscow City authorities do not issue authorizations for any actions on the heavily busy square and propose to relocate to other sites – something that the oppositionists never agree to.

The opposition’s attempts to reaffirm its intransigence in broad public view typically end up with arrests and Eduard Limonov, a Soviet-era dissident and ·migr· usually finds himself among the detainees.

Article 31 of Russia’s Constitution says: “Citizens of the Russian Federation shall have the right to gather peacefully, without weapons, and to hold meetings, rallies, demonstrations, marches and pickets.”


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