World Tens of thousands demonstrate for Russian governor Furgal
Anti-Kremlin protests hit Far Eastern Russia amid crackdown
Tens of thousands of people protested in Russia's Far East in a rare display of opposition to president Vladimir Putin, triggered by a popular govenor's arrest. The protests in the city of Khabarovsk on the border with China were as large or bigger than almost any protests seen in Moscow in recent years, where opposition to Putin is normally concentrated.
Tens of thousands demonstrated in the far east of Russia after the arrest of governor Sergei Furgal.
They opposed the actions of the authorities in Moscow in the case on Saturday and also called for the resignation of Kremlin chief Vladimir Putin. The 50-year-old governor, who is not part of the Kremlin United Russia party, is under investigation on suspicion of murdering businessmen. There were
demonstrations in several cities in the Khabarovsk region. According to local media, observers in the city of Khabarovsk spoke of the biggest protests in years. The police estimated the number of participants up to a total of 12,000. Media reports mostly spoke of more than 30,000 people.
Protests erupt in Russia's Far East after arrest of governor over years-old murders
Thousands of Russians protested on the streets in the country's remote Far Eastern territory of Khabarovsk on Saturday after their governor was arrested and flown to Moscow on charges for years-old murders, in a detention criticized as a politically motivated move by President Vladimir Putin's government.Thousands of Russians protested on the streets in the country's remote Far Eastern territory of Khabarovsk on Saturday after their governor was arrested and flown to Moscow on charges for years-old murders, in a detention criticized as a politically motivated move by President Vladimir Putin's government.
On streets and squares they shouted "Freedom", "Bring Furgal back", "We are Sergei Furgal", "Moscow, go away" and "Putin is a thief". Signatures had been collected for the popular governor's release. Demonstrators also criticized the influence of the power apparatus in Moscow, just over eight hours away, on the region, which is not far from China.
The reports said it remained peaceful. There were no arrests. Demonstrations of the corona pandemic are currently banned in Russia. The governor's spokeswoman thanked Instagram for the support. The region has rarely experienced such unanimity, wrote Nadeschda Tomtschenko. She also turned directly to the demonstrators: "We are sure that you will be heard."
Furgal was taken into custody on Friday. He denied all allegations. The investigators accuse him of ordering the murder of two businessmen. In a third case, the attempted murder remained.
In particular, Furgal's liberal-democratic party LDPR led by ultra-nationalist Vladimir Zhirinovsky sees political action against the politician. Furgal had defeated the Kremlin United Russia candidate in the 2018 election. In the past, there have been repeated trials of senior civil servants, including members of the Kremlin party.
Chechen leader blames foreign spies for slaying his critics .
MOSCOW (AP) — The regional strongman leader of Russia's province of Chechnya on Thursday blamed unidentified foreign spy agencies for the recent killing in Austria of a Chechen man who criticized him. Ramzan Kadyrov claimed on his blog that the ethnic Chechen who was shot dead in a Vienna suburb over the weekend fell victim to “special services working against Russia and myself.” The 43-year-old Chechen leader rejected allegations of his involvement in the slaying, saying that the killing in Vienna and earlier slayings of ethnic Chechens in Europe were performed by foreign spies to compromise him and tarnish Russia's image.