A prominent Russian radical was among dozens of people arrested during a nationwide day of protests over Moscow’s response to the global economic crisis.
Eduard Limonov, leader of the banned National Bolshevik Party, was detained with other party activists in Moscow. The Communist Party and other groups also took to the streets to criticise the Kremlin’s handling of the downturn and express anger at current hardships. “This government is ruining the people,” said one protester. “It has no right to exist. It has always been the same and the elite who no longer represent the people must leave.” A protest by a youth group near the Russian government headquaters was broken up by security forces. Elsewhere, a group loyal to chess champion turned political activist Garry Kasparov was attacked by men wearing masks and wielding flagpoles. Some of his supporters have been detained by the authorities. In Vladivostok, there were demonstrations against and in favour of Vladimir Putin’s administration. Thousands backing the pro-Kremlin party United Russia attended its rally in the Pacific port city, including doctors and teachers whose salaries are financed by the government.