Thousands rally in Khabarovsk for third consecutive Saturday over arrested ex-governor Furgal

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Residents of Russia’s Far Eastern metropolis of Khabarovsk have continued to indicate their assist for imprisoned former governor Sergey Furgal, with town’s streets seeing mass protests for the 15th day in a row.

Furgal, a extremely common politician within the Far East, was arrested on July 9 on suspicion of ordering two profitable murders, and a 3rd failed homicide, courting again to the 2000s. Following his detainment, the previous governor was flown instantly to Moscow, the place he at the moment awaits his day in courtroom. Many Khabarovsk locals, over 6,000km from the capital, are infuriated that Furgal has been eliminated by federal powers and can stand trial so distant. Furgal maintains his innocence.

According to native information portal DVhab.ru, an estimated 15,000-20,000 individuals took to the streets in the primary metropolis of the Khabarovsk Region, with the mayor’s workplace counting solely 6,500. Though the protest was unsanctioned, the mass gathering appeared to go off with no hitch.  

Khabarovsk residents marched alongside a number of the metropolis’s predominant thoroughfares in direction of the regional authorities’s headquarters. As in earlier weeks, protesters chanted slogans of “Fair trial in Khabarovsk!“, “As long as we are united, we are invincible!” and “Freedom for Furgal!”  Outside of Khabarovsk, a lot smaller rallies had been additionally held in different Far Eastern cities, resembling Vladivostok, Komsomolsk-on-Amur, and Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk.  

Furgal was elected as governor of the Khabarovsk Region in September 2018, beating the candidate from United Russia, the nation’s ruling occasion. He has remained a well-liked determine ever since, and in 2019, his Liberal Democratic occasion gained a landslide victory.

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On July 20, President Vladimir Putin signed a decree saying the interim governor as Mikhail Degtyarev, an MP from the identical occasion as Furgal. His appointment has additional angered some residents of the Khabarovsk Region, who see him as an inexperienced transplant from Moscow with no native space data. On July 24, the eve of the rallies, Degtyarev introduced that he would go away town and go to the extra rural areas of the area. 

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