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Bolotnaya Protester Released From Psychiatric Clinic

Maksim Panfilov appears in Moscow's Basmanny district court in April 2016.

A man accused of participating in clashes with security forces at a Moscow protest on the eve of Russian President Vladimir Putin's inauguration in 2012 has been released from a psychiatric clinic.

A court in the southern city of Astrakhan ruled on January 22 that Maksim Panfilov, who was diagnosed with suffering from Tourette's syndrome, a neuropsychiatric disorder, must be transferred to "ambulatory treatment not linked to placement in a psychiatric clinic."

Panfilov was arrested in 2016 among dozens of other participants to the protest on Moscow's Bolotnaya Square in May 2012. He was later found incapable to stand trial for his disease and committed to a psychiatric clinic in his native city of Astrakhan.

Police detained more than 400 people after the clashes, which police and demonstrators blame on one another.

The rally was one of a series of large opposition protests sparked mainly by anger over evidence of widespread electoral fraud and dismay at Putin's decision to return to the presidency after a four-year stint as prime minister.

More than 30 people were prosecuted in connection with the clashes, and more than 20 were sentenced to prison terms or served time in pretrial detention.

The last imprisoned Bolotnaya activist, Ivan Nepomnyashchikh, was released in August after serving a 30-month sentence. He left Russia for the United States two weeks later.

The last suspect in the case, Dmitry Buchenkov, who insisted that he was not even in Moscow when the protest took place, has also fled Russia.

Amnesty International says the police action at the rally "was not the quelling of a riot but the crushing of a protest," and that all those prosecuted are "victims of a politically motivated show trial."

Based on reporting by Interfax, Mediazona, and TASS