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Russian Activist Detained Over Unsanctioned Rally Released From Pretrial Detention

Russia activist Aleksei Minyailo

MOSCOW -- A court in Moscow has released activist Aleksei Minyailo, who is charged with taking part in mass disorder during an unsanctioned rally in July, from pretrial detention.

The Basman district court on September 26 ordered Minyailo to stay in Moscow while an investigation into his case continues.

Minyailo and several other activists were sent to pretrial detention in early August.

Some of those arrested along with Minyailo were also charged with assaulting law enforcement officers.

Minyailo has insisted that charges against him are groundless because police detained him before he joined the rally on July 27.

Nearly 1,400 demonstrators were held after the July 27 rally to protest the refusal by officials to register independent and opposition candidates for Moscow city council elections.

The strong security response in Moscow has been condemned by rights groups and many Western governments and organizations for a "disproportionate" use of force in breaking up the demonstration.

In all, 17 people were arrested and charged with attacking law enforcement officers during the rally.

Human rights activists insist that events during the July 27 rally were not "mass disorder."