The government of Moscow refused to authorise a number of pickets in the city centre on August, 17.
The organisers intend to hold pickets in support of independent candidates for Moscow City Duma deputies, as well as suspects in the ‘rioting’ criminal case, Ilya Azar, a city council deputy and journalist, said on Facebook.
Штош.СЕНСАЦИЯ: Московские власти продолжают ограничивать свободу собраний. Сначала они отказались согласовать шествие…
According to city officials, pickets ‘will create obstacles to passers-by’, he added.
Earlier, the organisers who had asked permission of the city authorities to stage a march from Strastnoy Boulevard to Sakharov Avenue, were turned down.
In mid July, Russians started protesting against the authorities’ refusal to register opposition and independent candidates for the Moscow City Duma elections.
On July 24, the riot police arrested opposition leader Alexei Navalny over his call on Muscovites to take part in the unauthorised rally on July, 27. The politician has to spend 30 days in jail, so does activist Mark Galperin. Konstantin Kotov and Alexander Archagov got a 10-day term in custody each. On the same day, the police searched homes of might-have-been candidates over ‘creating difficulties to election commissions’. The Investigative Committee states that the opposition activists intended to thwart their activity and staged the rallies near the building of the Moscow City Election Commission. The corresponding criminal case was opened shortly before the raids under Art. 141 of the Criminal Code, which may carry punishment of up to 5 years in prison.
On July 28, Navalny was taken to hospital due to a ‘severe allergic reaction’. Physician Anastasia Vasilyeva, who earlier treated Navalny, does not rule out that ‘toxic damage’ to the skin and mucous membranes was caused by an unknown chemical substance and is the result of the action of a third person.
14 people are defendants in the criminal proceedings under Art. 318-1 (using force against against a public officer) and Art. 212-2 (participation in mass disorders) after their showing up at the rally on July, 27 and August, 3.
The Russian police detained about 339 people in five Russian cities over the recent protests that took place on August, 10. In Moscow, about 50,000 people gathered for an authorised rally.