Protesters across Russia were defying orders not to hold unauthorized protests Sunday, with demonstrations triggered by the detention of opposition leader Alexey Navalny.
Why it matters: His detention has united Russians from a variety of backgrounds, including those who are against Navalny’s politics, against the authoritarian leadership of President Vladimir Putin, per the New York Times. They’re rallying despite police arresting over 3,300 protesters last weekend amid a wider crackdown on dissidents.
Riot police at an unauthorized rally in Vladivostok. Moscow School for Social and Economic Sciences sociologist Konstantin Gaaze told the NYT, “Navalny has, for the first time, sparked a Russian protest movement against the president.” Photo: Yuri Smityuk/TASS via Getty Images
A police officer detains a demonstrator during an unauthorized protest in support of Navalny in the Far East city of Yakutsk in the Republic of Sakha. Photo: Vadim Skryabin/TASS via Getty Images
The scene in St Petersburg ahead of an unauthorized rally in the port city. Photo: Alexander Demianchuk/TASS via Getty Images
Demonstrators and police officers in Yakutsk, where temperatures have hit -39 degrees Fahrenheit. Photo: Vadim Skryabin/TASS via Getty Image
Novosibirsk police officers detain demonstrators. Photo: Kirill Kukhmar/TASS via Getty Images
Vladivostok police officers detain a demonstrator. Photo: Yuri Smityuk/TASS via Getty Images