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Tatars Protest Public-Transport Limits For Pensioners, Students

At least 1,000 protesters gathered in Kazan on January 9.
At least 1,000 protesters gathered in Kazan on January 9.
KAZAN, Russia -- At least 1,000 people have rallied in the capital of the Russian republic of Tatarstan to protest against limits on their public-transport privileges, RFE/RL's Tatar-Bashkir Service reports.

The protesters are challenging a decree by the Tatar government to limit the number of free trips on public transportation for retired workers, war veterans, students, and handicapped people to 30 per month as of January 1.

The gathering was organized by the local branch of Russia's Communist Party. The protesters held communist, hammer-and-sickle red flags. Activists from Russia's opposition Yabloko and A Just Russia parties took part in the rallies.

The protesters held placards such as "The elections are over, is it time to rob us?" "You have money to buy athletes but not to support pensioners," "Free public transport for students!" etc.

The gathering was sanctioned by Kazan's city government. Police monitored the gathering. No violence was reported.

Read more in Tatar and watch video in Russian here

RFE/RL has been declared an "undesirable organization" by the Russian government.

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