Governor in custody: renewed protests in eastern russia

In the east of Russia several thousand people protested against the removal of Governor Furgal. Your displeasure is directed against the Kremlin, where it is hoped that the situation will soon calm down.

Thousands of people took to the streets on the fourth Saturday in a row in the far east of Russia for the imprisoned ex-governor of Khabarovsk, Sergei Furgal. According to local media, significantly fewer people took part in the protests when it was pouring rain than on the previous weekends. The authorities said there were 3,500 demonstrators.

Furgal in custody

They would have peacefully demanded the release of Furgal, who is in custody in Moscow. In the city of Khabarovsk near the Pacific coast, as in the previous weeks, many people carried banners with portraits of the imprisoned politician. They shouted "I / we are Sergej Furgal!", "Furgal is our choice!" and "freedom". The protesters’ displeasure is also directed against President Vladimir Putin, who officially dismissed the governor.

It was day 22 of the protests. Demonstrations are currently not allowed in Russia due to the corona pandemic. There were initially no reports of arrests. On Friday evening, two young protesters came into police custody after a rally, reported the Echo Moskwy radio station. "We are not afraid of arrests if our future is at stake," a woman told the local news site DVHab.ru.

Furgal has a lot of popular support

The protests around 6000 kilometers east of the capital are also directed against political patronage from Moscow. People consider the judiciary’s actions against Furgal to be politically motivated. The politician of the Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR) won the election two years ago against the candidate of the Kremlin party. Furgal is considered popular in the region.

Investigators accuse Furgal of having commissioned two murders as a businessman 15 years ago. In another case it remained with attempted murder. The 50-year-old denied the allegations. The Kremlin has temporarily installed Mikhail Degtyaryov as governor and hopes that the protests will subside.

Degtjarjow is a party friend of Furgal. "If the region and the regional management work again as usual, the situation will calm down. We hope so," said Kremlin spokesman Dmitri Peskov a few days ago. Keep watching the situation.

Protests are very popular

According to a new poll by the opinion research institute Levada, almost half of Russians see the rallies in the east of the country positively. The opinion pollers determined that 83 percent of those surveyed had already heard of it. 29 percent did not rule out joining similar protests in their own region.

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