Kremlin dubs some protesters ‘hooligans & provocateurs,’ says attraction for US sanctions proves Navalny’s crew are ‘foreign agents’

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Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman has defended the police’s resolution to take powerful measures to detain and disperse supporters of jailed opposition determine Alexey Navalny at rallies throughout the nation over the weekend.

Speaking to journalists on Monday, Dmitry Peskov mentioned that the demonstrations attracted “quite a large number of hooligans and provocateurs,” which, he argued, defined the violent clashes with authorities. However, he added, using power needed to be fastidiously monitored, even when it was essential within the face of “illegal actions.”

The Kremlin press secretary added that there was no prospect of dialogue with these inflicting unrest within the streets and that the minority chargeable for violence ought to be handled “in full strictness of the law.” “As for other people,” he added, “there are all the tools for expressing your point of view within the law at your disposal.”

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During the briefing with reporters, Peskov additionally slammed the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK), arrange by Navalny in 2011, which this week wrote to new US President Joe Biden requesting the White House sanction Russia over Navalny’s arrest. “Let’s just say the Fund has demonstrated, technically and in general, that it deserves the status of a foreign agent,” he mentioned. The FBK was beforehand handed the standing by the Ministry of Justice as a consequence of receiving funding from abroad.

The group connected an inventory of “corrupt Russian allies of President Putin,” together with billionaire Roman Abramovich, the nation’s Minister for Health Mikhail Murashko, and 33 different outstanding figures. “We would be grateful if the US would take concrete policy and sanctions actions to limit corruption and abuse of human rights,” it mentioned. 

First Deputy Chairman of the Russian Federation Council Committee on Foreign Affairs Vladimir Dzhabarov lashed out on the group in feedback made to RIA Novosti on Sunday. “It smacks of treason,” he mentioned. “Can you imagine an American organization appealing to Vladimir Putin with a request to impose sanctions on the US president?”

Thousands of individuals took to the streets of cities throughout Russia on Sunday for a second consecutive week of protests. While most had been peaceable, some fought with officers and a police van was allegedly torched in Moscow. In St. Petersburg, which has seen a few of the most pronounced violence over the previous fortnight, a video emerged of a tense standoff between officers and protesters. After a small group of police had been chased down a road off town’s Sennaya Square, one officer, who had stumbled after being kicked by a pro-Navalny marcher, drew his service pistol.

Also on rt.com More detentions & clashes with police as second consecutive weekend of pro-Navalny rallies throughout Russia appeal to smaller crowds

The unrest follows the arrest of the anti-corruption activist after touchdown at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport earlier in January. He had flown home from Berlin, the place he had been transferred in a comatose state after what his supporters, and a few worldwide observers, allege was a state-sponsored poisoning with the nerve agent Novichok.

The opposition determine is accused of violating the phrases of a three-and-a-half-year suspended sentence for fraud. He is because of stand trial over the fees in early February.

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