MOSCOW, January 23. /TASS/. Russia’s Office of the Prosecutor General and Interior Ministry warned citizens against participation in unathorized rallies planned by supporters of blogger Alexey Navalny for January 23.
Navalny, who was wanted for violating his suspended sentence in the Yves Rocher case, was detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport upon arrival from Berlin on Sunday. Moscow’s Khimkinsky District Court ruled on Monday that he should remain in custody until February 15. Navalny’s defense asked the court to release him and declare his detention unlawful.
Associates of Navalny called for unauthorized rallies in support the blogger. The police detained three associates of Navalny - Lyubov Sobol, Kira Yarmysh and Georgy Alburov - for such calls.
According to the Prosecutor General's Office, law enforcement agencies are determined to suppress illegal actions. First Deputy Interior Minister Alexander Gorovoy warned that those who call for participation in unauthorized rallies will be held accountable. He noted that the Interior Ministry is ready to ensure public order.
In order to prevent violations of the law during public events, Moscow Prosecutor’s Office warned 28 persons calling for participation in the rallies about the inadmissibility of violating the law, spokeswoman of the Moscow prosecutor's office, Lyudmila Nefedova told TASS.
The prosecutor's office recalled that both organization of unauthorized rallies and participation in them entail liability established by the legislation of the Russian Federation. The Moscow police warned that attempts to hold an illegal public event, as well as any provocative actions by its participants, would be regarded as a threat to public order and immediately suppressed. The police urged citizens not to give in to provocations, not to take part in such actions, and to comply with the legal requirements of law enforcement officers.
Social networks, which spread calls for unauthorized rallies, in particular among teenagers, also received warnings from the authorities. Russian mass media watchdog Roskomnadzor announced that TikTok, VKontakte, Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube were brought to administrative responsibility.
Children’s rights commissioner, Anna Kuznetsova stressed that those who organize unauthorized rallies deliberately expose the children participating in them to danger, using them as a human shield for their illegal actions. The Russian Education Ministry urged parents to protect their children from attending unauthorized gatherings.
Under the Administrative Code of the Russian Federation (Art. 20.2 - Violating the Established Procedure for Arranging or Conducting a Meeting, Rally, Demonstration, Procession or Picket), participation in an unauthorized meeting shall entail the imposition of an administrative fine in the amount of 10,000 rubles or more or arrest for up to 15 days. A repeated violation shall entail a fine of 150,000 rubles or arrest up to 30 days.