Navalny was released from police

Russian riot police detain Alexei Navalny at this morning's protests

Russian riot police detain Alexei Navalny at this morning's protests

A helicopter hovered overhead to monitor the crowd. Police made arrests at demonstrations in some other cities. Hundreds of his supporters have also reportedly been detained.

Opposition leader Alexey Navalny urged supporters to join unauthorized rallies in about 90 cities against corruption and censorship under the slogan "He's not our Tsar".

Mr Navalny had called on Russians to stage rallies...

Opposition motion gathers in Moscow forward of the inauguration for Putin's fourth time period in workplace. Mr Putin's inauguration on Monday follows his landslide re-election in March and he is already Russia's longest-serving leader since Joseph Stalin.

Earlier on Saturday protesters took to the streets in towns and cities in Russia's Far East and Siberia, with dozens of them detained, Navalny's team and an independent monitor said.

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Rioters have burned tires, hurled firebombs and rocks at Israeli troops, and repeatedly attempted to sabotage the security fence. Demonstrations along the Gaza Strip's eastern border first began on March 30 and are set to continue until May 15.


Police also used batons against protesters who chanted "Putin is a thief!" and "Russia will be free!"

It said 574 were arrested in Moscow alone.

"But certainly this is a countrywide event that has brought thousands and thousands of Russians out on to the streets", Challands said.

The unauthorized rallies have continued in cities across Russian Federation, according to the BBC, with protesters shouting slogans including "Down with the Tsar!" and "Russia without Putin".

The so-called "Bolotnaya cases", named after the square close to the Kremlin where the protests took place, cast a chill on Russia's opposition scene, which has become increasingly marginal since.

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When police tried to stop the unsanctioned march, protesters pelted them with eggs and water bottles, an AFP reporter said.

Ahead of Saturday's rallies, several organizers from Navalny's group were detained in a number of regions.

"We don't have the hope that we'll make Russian Federation wonderful and prosperous overnight", Leonid Volkov, Navalny's chief of staff, said on the Navalny team's live YouTube broadcast encouraging people to join the protests. Putin has now been in power as president or prime minister for more than two decades, which some see as a risky monopoly.

The authorities regard most of the protests as illegal, arguing that their time and place was not agreed with them beforehand.

Navalny has remained critical of Putin following the election results.

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Demonstrations have been held all over the country today by Russians angry at Vladimir Putin's impending inauguration. Putin won re-election with almost 77% of the vote, but global observers have described the election as essentially rigged.

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