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On Monday the supporters and opponents of Vladimir Putin held rallies in Moscow. The supporters celebrated his victory, the opponents voiced their protest. The opposition gathered up to 15,000 activists, demanding the election re-run and the dismissal of Chairman of the Central Elections Commission (CEC) Vladimir Churov, however, their action ended with a tough detention of the opposition leaders. The rally in support of Putin gathered 20,000 people and passed peacefully.
Up to 15,000 people were participating in the Monday rally of the opposition on the Pushkin Square according to official reports of the Interior Ministry, the Kommersant daily reported. Most protesters were gloomy and self-concentrated. For the first time Mikhail Prokhorov delivered a speech at the For Fair Elections rallies and thanked those who voted for him “even in view of unfair elections.”
The policemen and the OMON special task force showed their power already after the official end to the rally, the RBC daily writes. The Left Front leader Sergei Udaltsov, as he promised at the rally, stayed on the square with in an indefinite protest action. Alexei Navalny, Ilya Yashin and several hundreds of civilians, who did not want to leave the square, joined him. After several hours of warning the police shifted to tough actions, surrounding and dispersing the protesters. Udaltsov, Yashin, Navalny and several dozens of people were finally detained.
The number of detainees exceeded 200 people in Moscow, Vedomosti cited a source in the law enforcement agencies as saying. The police stations in the Central Administrative District of Moscow were full to capacity, the detainees are being brought to various police stations to make up administrative protocols.
Earlier on Friday about 100 people were detained at the CEC building during an unauthorized rally of the Other Russia activists, press secretary of the unregistered party Alexander Averin said. The Other Russia leader Eduard Limonov was detained.
On Monday absolutely happy people gathered on two squares in Moscow, namely the Manezh Square and the Revolution Squares. Their presidential candidate won and they celebrated his victory, Rossiiskaya Gazeta daily writes. The headquarters of common actions, which organized the event, arranged right two simultaneous rallies, in which members and supporters of the Youth Guard, the movements Mestnye, Novye Lyudi, Nashi, Young Russia and United Russia were participating. The bid for the rally on the Manezh Square envisaged about 20,000 people, the bid for the rally on the Revolution Square – about 1,500 people. But actually one can easily take a walk from one rally to another one along the State Historical Museum. If political speeches were delivered on the Manezh Square, a concert was given on the Revolution Square. Although the speeches, which were delivered on the rostrum placed behind the Monument to Soviet Marshall Georgy Zhukov, were so joyful that they could have been singing quite easily, the governmental newspaper noted.