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Three Detained In Russia's Far East Amid Anti-Kremlin Protests


Putin's New Governor Fails To Calm Russia's Far East Amid Sustained Protests
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WATCH: Putin's New Governor Fails To Calm Russia's Far East Amid Sustained Protests

KOMSOMOLSK-ON-AMUR, Russia -- Police in Russia's Far East have detained three people who demonstrated in support of the arrested former governor of the Khabarovsk Krai region.

A coordinator of the opposition Open Russia organization, Sergei Naumov, told RFE/RL that Svetlana Dilman, her son Yevgeny, and an activist known as Dmitry were detained in the city of Komsomolsk-on-Amur on July 29.

"Svetlana told me by phone that five police officers severely beat her son while they detained him," Naumov said.

Police officials in Komsomolsk-on-Amur were not available for immediate comment.

In the regional capital, Khabarovsk, supporters of former Governor Sergei Furgal rallied on July 29 for the 19th straight day, demanding the resignation of President Vladimir Putin.

Demonstrators have been protesting in the city of 600,000 people since July 11, with their numbers reaching tens of thousands on weekends.

Smaller demonstrators have been held in towns and cities in Khabarovsk Krai and adjacent regions.

Khabarovsk Krai residents overwhelmingly voted for Furgal, a member of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR), in the 2018 gubernatorial elections. His surprise victory was a blow to the ruling United Russia party.

Furgal, who was arrested in Khabarovsk on July 9 and transferred to Moscow, is charged with attempted murder and ordering two murders in 2004-05. He denies the allegations.

Putin has appointed Mikhail Degtyaryov, also an LDPR member, as acting regional governor.

Authorities are said to be unnerved by the rallies in Furgal’s support, with Khabarovsk’s mayor saying such demonstrations were illegal and could help the spread of the coronavirus.

Russia's Federal Security Service (FSB) has warned of an alleged terrorist threat involving explosives, which it claimed to have foiled.

In addition, the regional authorities have said they were considering a return to strict quarantine measures, citing the “difficult situation with the spread of coronavirus infection.”

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