STATEMENT
Russia: Index condemns arrest of protesters and journalists at anti-corruption rallies
15 Jun 2017
BY INDEX ON CENSORSHIP
Protesters in St. Petersburg demonstrated against corruption in Russia (Photo: Andrey Kalikh)

Protesters in St. Petersburg demonstrated against corruption in Russia (Photo: Andrey Kalikh)

Over 1,500 protesters were reportedly detained by riot police on 12 June 2017 during anti-corruption demonstrations in cities across Russia. The demonstrations were called by Alexei Navalny, a prominent critic of the Russian government.

Journalists detained include Mapping Media Freedom’s Russia correspondent Andrey Kalikh, was held until the eve of the 13th and is currently facing 10,500 ruble fine (160 euros). Russian journalists Ksenia Morozova and Andrey Poznaykov, photographer David Frenkel, and Spanish reporter Ignacio Ortega were also detained after showing their press credentials.

Activist and Index Freedom of Expression winner Ildar Dadin was also detained and reported that he was beaten while in custody after the protests. Police also threatened to put a plastic bag over his head.

“The mass detainment of protesters, journalists and their alleged mistreatment by security forces clearly violates multiple articles of the European Convention on Human Rights”, said Hannah Machlin, project manager, Mapping Media Freedom at Index on Censorship. “These detentions show how repressive and intolerant the current regime is toward free speech.”

Index on Censorship calls on the Russian authorities to respect the right to freedom of assembly and freedom of expression, immediately release and drop all charges against demonstrators and journalists.

Authorities in Moscow said Monday’s protest was illegal and arrested Navalny when he tried to leave his home that morning.

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