MOSCOW, July 26 (Itar-Tass) — About 400 people have gathered for an opposition rally in the Novopushkinsky public garden downtown Moscow to support opposition members who were arrested in connection with riots on Bolotnaya Square.
“About 400 people, of which a hundred are media representatives, gathered in the Novopushkinsky public garden at 19:00 Moscow time,” the press service of Moscow’s main interior department told Itar-Tass on Thursday.
The situation is calm. No violations of public order have been noticed.
The protesters are holding posters, saying “Free Innocent Opposition Members” and are waving flags of the Solidarity movement and the Left Front.
The Left Front coordinator Sergei Udaltsov stressed the need to take out as many people to the streets as possible. He said that 200,000 people were expected to go out on Moscow streets on September 15, a day of an All-Russian protest action. The protesters chanted invariable anti-presidential slogans several times.
Reinforced police units and OMON riot policemen are patrolling the boulevards and streets adjacent to Pushkin Square. Anybody who wants to get to the rally should go through metal detectors.
The Moscow authorities have sanctioned today’s rally. Initially, its organizers declared 5,000 participants but ultimately agreed to 1,500 people.