Russian police detained more than 500 people during a protest in Moscow on Wednesday. Protesters are demanding that the cops involved in the framing of a journalist be punished.
Police had abruptly dropped drug charges against journalist Ivan Golunov a day before protests broke out.
Golunov, 36, is known for exposing corruption of Moscow city officials. He was detained by police last Thursday and accused of dealing drugs, allegations he denied. The journalist’s arrest was understood to be punishment for his investigative work into governmental corruption.
Government officials had hoped freeing Golunov and promising to punish those who framed him would satisfy his supporters.
More than 1,000 people marched through Moscow, chanting “Russia will be free,” “Russia without Putin” and “Down with the Tsar.”
Police detained more than 500 people and most were released without charge later on Wednesday.
President Vladimir Putin fired two senior police officers over the arrest of Golunov, Major General Andrei Puchkov and the head of the Moscow police department for narcotics control, Major General Yury Devyatkin.
Interior Minister Vladimir Kolokoltsev had requested the dismissal of the two cops after lifting the charges against Golunov.
“Large police presence at FIFA World Cup in Moscow” by Marco Verch is licensed under CC BY 2.0