Nearly 1,500 Protesters Arrested at Alexey Navalny Rallies in Russia

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  • Bloomberg Quicktake: Now published this video item, entitled “Nearly 1,500 Protesters Arrested at Alexey Navalny Rallies in Russia” – below is their description.

    Police in Russia arrested nearly 1,500 people Wednesday during a day of demonstrations throughout the country calling for freedom for imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

    The largest protest was in Moscow, where thousands marched through the city center with mobile phone flashlights and placards reading “Freedom for Navalny.”

    Navalny’s team called for the unsanctioned demonstrations after weekend reports that his health was deteriorating and his life was in danger.

    His organization asked the Moscow protesters to assemble on Manezh Square, just outside the Kremlin walls, but police blocked it off.

    Instead, a large crowd gathered at the nearby Russian State Library and another lined Tverskaya Street, a main avenue that leads to the square. Both groups then moved through the streets.

    Turnout estimates varied widely: Moscow police said 6,000 people demonstrated in the capital, while an observer told Navalny’s YouTube channel that the crowd was about 60,000.

    In St. Petersburg, police blocked off Palace Square, the vast space outside the Hermitage museum. Instead, protesters crowded along nearby Nevsky Prospekt.

    The OVD-Info group, which monitors political arrests and provides legal advice, said at least 1,496 people were arrested in 82 cities – the largest tally being nearly 600 in St. Petersburg.

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