Alexei Navalny is calling on Russians to participate in protests on the eve of Vladimir Putin’s swearing-in ceremony which is scheduled for May 7.
The opposition will formally apply for holding rallies and marches, but if the authorities refuse to authorize rallies, people should still take to the streets. According to Navalny, this will be a protest ‘against corruption, against the establishment of monarchy, against inequality, censorship and lawlessness’.
“No one will ever be able to turn us into powerless serfs. Putin is not a tsar for us! On May 5 – no matter where you live, no matter what political views you adhere to – if you consider yourself a Russian citizen who has rights, take to the streets,” the politician said.
In the run-up to Putin’s inauguration in 2012, security forces brutally put down protests in Moscow’s Bolotnaya Square. Then the Investigative Committee opened a number of criminal cases against the protesters – more than 30 people were convicted on charges of taking part in riots and offering resistance to police officers.