Thousands of people on Saturday marked President Vladimir Putin’s upcoming fourth inauguration with street protests across Russia, defying a heavy police presence that detained more than 1,600 demonstrators.
Police dragged the organizer, 41-year-old opposition leader Alexei Navalny, out of the Moscow rally by his arms and ankles minutes after he arrived. Protesters packed Pushkin Square in the center of the city nevertheless, and they were met by columns of riot police who charged into the crowd to try to disperse it.
Across the country, 1,612 people were detained in 26 cities, with more than 700 in the capital alone, according to the protest-monitoring website OVD-Info.
(c) 2018, The Washington Post · Amie Ferris-Rotman, Anton Troianovski