Russian protesters rally on Vladimir Putin’s birthday

7 Oct

Mr Navalny’s arrest galvanised supporters in 80 cities, who turned out on Saturday in a nationwide protest against the ruling.

“I came out to support the opposition because I don’t agree with the course our country has taken,” said Anatoly Morozov, a student dressed in a fox costume at the St Petersburg protest. “The ignorance and insanity has reached impossible levels.”

Protesters chanted “Free Navalny,” “Putin’s a theif” and “Fourth term in prison,” referring to the president’s expected run for re-election.

Last year Mr Putin played hockey on his birthday, but the mood this year was not as light. The Kremlin said on Friday he would be taking phone calls and attending a meeting of the security council in Sochi.

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