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The staff of the Government of the Moscow Region interferes with YABLOKOs picketing

Press Release

January 28, 2009

The staff of the Government of the Moscow Region interfered with YABLOKOs one-man picketing in front of their building. YABLOKO protests against virtual introduction of a ban on one-man pickets which has been initiated by the Moscow Region Duma.

The parliament of the Moscow Region submitted to the State Duma a draft law stipulating that one-man pickets (in addition to demonstrations, rallies and group pickets) should be not only coordinated with the authorities but organisers of such pickets should also submit the plan and schedule of such picketing. Activists of the Moscow Region branch of YABLOKO call one-man picketing the only form of street protest which has been available, as normally the authorities ban rallies and pickets with a large number of participants under faked pretexts.

About 11 a.m. an unidentified persons tore out a placard Ban on One-Man Pickets - a Disgrace of the Moscow Region Authorities from YABLOKOs picketing activist and disappeared with it in the office of the Government of the Moscow Region. The police did not even attempt to detain this person, moreover YABLOKOs activists were not allowed to follow him.

Todays picket was timed to the session of the regional government devoted to the results of 2009 and goals for 2010. Representatives of the federal power bodies and heads of the districts of the region were also to participate in the session.

YABLOKOs activists decided to suspend picketing and resume it at the same place at 2 p.m.

Last week YABLOKOs activists protested against ban on one-man picketing by the Moscow Region Duma building. After the action was over, the police detained the participants and the activists were fined by a court.

See also:

Human Rights

Freedom of Speech

Press Release

January 28, 2009