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Opposition Activist Detained In Moscow

Workers put up a barrier near Triumph Square in Moscow prior to today's 'Strategy 31' protest.
MOSCOW -- Moscow police have detained an activist from the opposition Other Russia coalition, RFE/RL's Russian Service reports.

Igor Berezyuk, a Belarusian national, faces charges of attacking a policeman during an unsanctioned rally in Moscow at the end of December.

Police questioned 11 more Other Russia activists and searched the organization's offices in Moscow earlier today.

Other Russia is a participant in the “Strategy 31” campaign to uphold freedom of assembly, which is guaranteed by Article 31 of the Russian constitution. On the last day of months that have 31 days, campaign activists gather on Moscow's Triumph Square to express their support for Article 31.

The campaign was launched in 2009 by Eduard Limonov, one of Other Russia's leaders. Other opposition groups and rights activists joined in later.

Activists plan to hold two separate “Strategy 31” rallies today in Moscow. The municipal authorities have granted permission for one, initiated by Moscow Helsinki Group chairwoman Lyudmila Alekseyeva, but not the second, organized by Limonov.

Limonov and Alekseyeva split in October after the latter agreed to the Moscow authorities' request to limit the number of demonstrators at the protests. Limonov accused her of collaborating with authorities.

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