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Moscow Court Upholds Decision Not To Take Child From Parents Who Attended Rally

Olga Prokazova and Dmitry Prokazov after appearing in court in Moscow in August.
Olga Prokazova and Dmitry Prokazov after appearing in court in Moscow in August.

The Moscow City Court has upheld a lower court's decision not to take a child from a couple for bringing him to a protest rally in the capital over the summer.

The court ruled on November 6 that the Lefortovo district court's September 2 decision to leave the child in its parents' custody was legal.

Prosecutors wanted to deprive Dmitry Prokazov and his wife Olga Prokazova of their parental rights, saying that they put their 20-month-old son in danger and violated their parental duties.

Investigators said that the Prokazovs brought their son to a rally on July 27, where they handed the boy to an activist, Sergei Fomin, so that he could pass through a police cordon with the child in his arms to avoid arrest.

The couple said then that Fomin was Olga Prokazova's cousin and their child's godfather, and was helping them to take care of their son during the rally.

Fomin, who was charged with taking part in "mass riots," is currently being held in pretrial detention.

The case against the couple sparked harsh criticism among ordinary Muscovites and human rights organizations across Russia.

Several sanctioned and unsanctioned rallies took place in Moscow throughout July and August in which protesters demanded that independent and opposition candidates be allowed to run in September municipal elections.

Police detained more than 1,300 people at the July 27 demonstration, and more than 1,000 people were detained during a similar rally in Moscow on August 3.

Dozens of protesters have been fined or given jail sentences for organizing and participating in the rallies.

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