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New Charges Filed Against Prominent Russian Opposition Activist

Russian opposition activist Sergei Mokhnatkin
MOSCOW -- New charges have been filed against a noted Russian opposition activist.

Russia's Investigative Committee said on January 13 that Sergei Mokhnatkin is now suspected of assaulting a second police officer -- a female -- during a Strategy-31 protest in Moscow last month.

A Moscow court sanctioned Mokhnatkin's two-month pretrial arrest on January 2 for assaulting a male police officer at a December 31 rally that was held in support of Article 31 of the Russian Constitution, which guarantees the right of peaceful assembly.

Mokhnatkin, who is now staging a hunger strike in his cell, first came to prominence when he was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for attacking a police officer during the dispersal of a similar rally in 2009.

He was pardoned by then-President Dmitry Medvedev in April 2012.
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