In #Moscow, on Sunday, hundreds of people were arrested for participating in unauthorized #Protests. Among the arrested is prominent opposition figure Alexei Navalny and at least 500 other people were arrested. The protests appear to be the biggest since anti-government demonstrations in 2011 and 2012, as confirmed by BBC. The US State Department spoke against the arrests. Similarly, EU demanded the release of detainees.
Why the protests?
The protests broke out after Mr. Navalny published records claiming that Mr. Medvedev has amassed luxury yachts, mansions, and vineyards.
This fortune suggests that his income exceeds his official salary. The report, posted on the YouTube, has more than eleven million views. According to the BBC, the video includes the accusations that Mr. Medvedev has a special house for ducks on his property. As a result of this, some demonstrators held up images of yellow rubber ducks on Sunday’s demonstrations.
As reported by the BBC, US state department spokesman Mark Toner said: “The Russian people, like people everywhere, deserve a government that supports an open marketplace of ideas, transparent and accountable governance, equal treatment under the law, and the ability to exercise their rights without fear of retribution.” An EU spokesman also condemns the detention of hundreds of peaceful protesters. The statement added: “We call on the Russian authorities to abide fully by the international commitments it has made… and to release without delay the peaceful demonstrators that have been detained.”.
The most prominent critic of President Putin
Alexei Navalny is an anti-corruption campaigner who is the most prominent face of Russian opposition. He was born in 1976 at Bentley, in the Moscow region. In 1998, he graduated in law at Moscow’s Friendship of the Peoples University. In 2010, he became a Yale World Fellow. Currently, he lives in Moscow with his wife and two children. Mr. Navalny opposed the ruling party, United #Russia, calling it the “party of crooks and thieves,” as reported by the BBC.
Last year, Navalny announced his intentions to run for president in 2018. In 2008 he started blogging about malpractice and corruption in Russia. Navalny took a leading role in the street protests that accompanied Putin’s 2012 return to the presidency. In July 2013, he was briefly jailed for fraud and corruption in the city of Kirov. The five-year sentence was seen as political. But, he was allowed to campaign for the Moscow mayoral elections out of prison.