Navalny’s inner circle called people to protests on Wednesday night to support a prisoner of opposition who was imprisoned on hunger strike.
In Russia on Wednesday, police isolated the entire Manege Square and its surroundings in the center of Moscow, where an imprisoned opposition politician was to be held Alexei Navalnyin demonstration of support.
Navalny’s inner circle had invited people for an evening demonstration scheduled to begin at 7 p.m. However, shortly before seven people arrived in the vicinity of Manee Square, who were coming to demonstrate.
“The most ill-treated treatment is outrageous. No person is allowed to be killed, ”said the twenties Ilja main street at the beginning of Tverskaya.
In addition to the young people, a lot of older people had also arrived.
Demonstrations has been held in dozens of cities across the country. Large crowds were already reported from Vladivostok, Khabarovsk, Novosibirsk, Tomsk and Irkutsk, among others, where the evening came hours earlier than Moscow.
However, the number of participants remained in many places since January, when large demonstrations were held in Russia after the return and arrest of Navalny.
Organizers had announced that on Wednesday the goal was the largest wave of demonstrations in Russia’s recent history. For their part, the authorities are already working to keep protests to a minimum by isolating reported gatherings, warning of harsh grips and apprehending key personnel.
Close circle unexpectedly announced the demonstration on Wednesday night on Sunday. Previously, it had been told it expects half a million protesters to Navalnyin registration web page, but the figure fell short of a few thousand.
The main reason for the premature was that, according to a close circle, there was information over the weekend about the rapid deterioration of the condition of Navalny, who had been on hunger strike for almost three weeks. Both the assistants and the doctors who saw the test results warned him that he was in danger of death.
Read more: Alexei Navalnyi has been on a hunger strike for 21 days – this is how non-eating affects a person
The aim of the call for demonstrations was announced to be to save Navalny’s life. “He will be killed before our eyes,” the invitation said.
Navalnyi himself posted on Tuesday that he looks like a skeleton but is still alive. He admitted the weekend was difficult.
On Monday, prison authorities transferred him to a nearby penitentiary hospital. According to lawyers, it hardly changed the situation, as civilian doctors still do not have access to Navalny. Navalnyi went on a hunger strike because the prison prevented him from seeing doctors.
For the demonstration there is another important reason for bringing forward. The Russian authorities are preparing to ban and declare Navalny’s FBK, which focuses on corruption investigations, and its regional network to be extremist. A Moscow court is expected to make a formal decision on the matter next week.
Wednesday was Navalny’s screening of supporters before the movement virtually has to move underground. With extremist status, staff, activists and supporters can receive criminal charges and prison sentences.
“The Kremlin failed to force Navalny into a political emigrant. This is an attempt to force FBK, practically the entire Navalny team, to emigrate, ”says R.Politik Incubator Director Tatjana Stanovaja evaluates the messaging service in Telegram.
“Within the country, this is an attempt to ban ‘navalism’ through the threat of a real criminal charge.”
In Moscow and in St. Petersburg, the police isolated the reported protest sites in good time. Manege Square in the center of Moscow was closed in the afternoon, and more police officers came to the center every evening. Tube buses were parked on the side streets.
In the Far East and Siberia, however, police extracts were milder than expected. NGO for statistics on arrests OVD info reported in the early evening that in many Siberian and Russian cities in the Far East, police had captured individual or at most some dozens of protesters.
In Moscow and St. Petersburg, police grips have often been tougher than in the rest of the country, including in the January protests.
In Moscow, the police arrested an FBK lawyer, among other things, during the day Ljubov Sobolin and Navalny spokesman Kira Jarmyšin. He is under house arrest, but is allowed to visit the shop at a specified time.
Navalny’s well-known supporters from across the country said police had already been on Tuesday night to warn them of the consequences of the protests. Police arrested locally known activists as early as Tuesday night.
Navalnyi returned to Moscow in January from Germany, where he was recovering from an assassination attempt on a neurotoxin. Police arrested him at the airport.
The court later sentenced him to prison for violating the probation rules. The original verdict has been widely regarded as political.
There is no accurate information about Navalny’s condition, nor how well he has recovered from the poisoning attempt. Before the hunger strike, he talked about back pain and loss of sensation in the limbs.
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