Moscow: searches, arrests and beatings ahead of new protests
Repression continues against protesters and opponents of President Putin in Moscow.
On August 7, a search was conducted at the Anti-Corruption Foundation, led by Russian opposition leader Aleksey Navalny, Mediazone reported.
Five lawyers of the foundation were forcibly taken in for interrogation in cases of money laundering, one of them was beaten.
Computers and other office equipment were seized as well. The foundation’s accounts have been seized – meanwhile, Alexey Navalny himself is under arrest.
Lyubov Sobol, one of the few protest leaders who has remained at liberty and one of the candidates not allowed to register for the upcoming Moscow Duma elections, tweeted:
“[The foundation’s] accounts have been blocked in order to 1. obstruct the work of [the foundation], and to prevent us from paying fines of those illegally detained in the protests. Hence the rush. The level of political pressure has increased many fold. In any case, the foundation will continue its work.”
Unrest in Moscow began on July 14, after the Moscow Central Election Commission refused to register a number of independent candidates for elections to the Moscow City Duma – a local legislative body.
Most of the candidates are now under arrest.
Twice – July 27 and August 3 – the protests in Moscow became widespread, from with 15-17,000 people participating.
They were brutally suppressed by police beatings and arrests: more than 1,500 were arrested on July 27, and more than 1,000 people were arrested on August 3.
Criminal cases have been opened for resistance to the police against six of them – hundreds have been called in as witnesses in the case of the organization of mass riots.
The actions of the authorities aim to intimidate protesters ahead of the rally scheduled for August 10 in Moscow.
The rally has been sanctioned by the authorities and is expected to exceed 50,000.