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Russian police warn against protests for prison release of Alexei Navalny

FILE – In this Jan. 23, 2021 file photo, protesters in St. Petersburg, Russia, clashed with police over the jailing of opposition leader Alexei Navalny. (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky, File)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 6:50 PM PT – Saturday, January 30, 2021

Russian police have issued strong warnings against protesting for the release of Alexei Navalny. On Saturday, authorities warned supporters of the opposition leader to not attend demonstrations planned for Sunday in Moscow.

The warnings came just hours ahead of the latest protests demanding Navalny’s release. The opposition leader has been detained for nearly two weeks since arriving in Russia from Germany for the first time in months. His arrest sparked nationwide protests, leading to the arrests of nearly four thousand people.

Close associates, including Navalny’s wife and brother, have also been detained in recent days. However, Russian authorities said they will continue to work to prevent any violence.

“Moreover, we warn that any violent actions against officers or refusal to obey their lawful orders will be prevented,” Irina Volk, spokeswoman for the Russian Interior Ministry stated. “Individuals who commit such illegal actions will be detained and held accountable according to the law.”

Russian police have set up barricades and said they plan to restrict movement in the center of Moscow on Sunday.

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