Newsletters / “Attempts to intimidate us won’t work!” Entire Municipal Russia Forum detained

The police have detained all 193 participants of the first Municipal Russia Forum in Moscow last weekend. Among those detained were Otkrytka’s director Andrey Pivovarov, activist Vladimir Kara-Murza, municipal deputies Ilya Yashin and Yulia Galyamina, Otkrytka’s coordinator Tatyana and former mayor of Yekaterinburg Yevgeny Roizman.

“The ENTIRE forum of municipal deputies of Russia was detained! (…) The dictatorship is throwing away their last fig leaves.”
Mikhail Khodorkovsky

The Forum was organized by United Democrats to create a platform where incumbent independent municipal deputies from over 50 Russian regions could exchange experiences in order to improve lives of the citizens.

“Attempts to intimidate those people that I saw at the Forum today won’t work. Thanks to everyone who came today. Everything will be fine!”
Andrey Pivovarov

According to United Democrats coordinator Anastasia Burakova protocols for those detained were all drawn up in advance. Provocateurs from state-controlled media were also planted in the police vans transporting the detained to the stations.

Police claimed the Forum had links to an “undesirable organization”, even though United Democrats are not listed as an undesirable organization. Later they said those detained were not following coronavirus-related health measures.

Western politicians including US Secretary of State condemned the unprecedented actions of the police:

“We call for an end to the persecution of independent voices.”
Antony Blinken

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