Hundreds of people have been detained at anti-corruption rallies in Moscow and St Petersburg. Riot police in central Moscow were picking protesters out of the crowd at random, a BBC correspondent at the demonstration has said.
Opposition leader Alexei Navalny was detained at his home ahead of the protests, according to his wife.Thousands of supporters have heeded his call to take to the streets of Moscow and other Russian cities.
OVD-Info, an independent NGO, told Russian media that 600 people had been detained at the Moscow protest and 300 at the rally in St Petersburg.
Police in Moscow say about 5,000 took part in the demonstration there, Interfax news agency reports.“Alexei [Navalny] has been arrested in the entrance to our block of flats,” Yuliya Navalnaya wrote on Twitter, ahead of the demonstration.
Mr Navalny, who intends to stand for the Russian presidency next year, had been due to attend the unauthorised rally in central Moscow
‘Many young plucked from the crowd’ – by BBC’s Sarah Rainsford, central Moscow.