Tuesday, May 6, 2008
The Russian opposition was to hold a protest rally on May 6 in Moscow, on the eve of Dmitry Medvedev's inauguration as president Vladimir Putin's replacement, but city officials refused to allow it - and leaders of the oppositional coalition, the Other Russia, ended up canceling the Dissenters' March at the last minute. Dozens of protesters were detained by police anyway.
LJ user drugoi, a top-ranking Russian blogger, posted photos as well as this description (RUS) of "the march, sort of":
This evening, by the monument to Griboedov at Chistye Prudy, 4,625 journalists and 8,416 policemen were waiting for the participants of the Dissenters' March, who, however, showed up from the opposite direction.
A small group of 15-20 people gathered at Pokrovka and moved along Chistye Prudy towards the subway station, accompanied by a few photographers and cameramen.
The police saw the group from afar and stopped it near the monument to a Kazakh [folk singer]. Just as I heard "grrrr... self-control and calmness... grhm-hm-gr..." coming through static noise from one riot cop's walkie-talkie, the opposition [protester] walking down the path were attacked from all sides.
[more photos and text]
LJ user kozenko posted an epitaph (RUS) to the Other Russia:
There was no Dissenters' March. The leaders vanished, and the activists carried out several small-scale and brief public disturbances in the city.
Well, the Other Russia, congratulations on your demise. Last year, it was fun with you, and even interesting. And at the start it even seemed that there was a future. But the finale turned out to be - forgive me - boring and embarrassing.
Here is one exchange from the comment section to this post:
This post sounds like something written by an offended and disappointed viewer. As if you had bought tickets for this show. And the troupe ran away with you money. :)
This posts sounds like something written by an offended and disappointed person. Very disappointed, because none of the politicians in this country represents his interests. [...]