Russians Hold Anti-war Rallies Amid Ominous Threats By Putin
MOSCOW (AP) -- From Moscow to Siberia, Russian anti-war activists took to the streets again Sunday to protest Russia's invasion of Ukraine, despite the arrests of hundreds of protesters each day.
Demonstrators held pickets and marched in city centers, chanting "No to war!" as President Vladimir Putin ordered Russian nuclear deterrent to be put on high alert, upping the ante in the Kremlin's standoff with the West and stoking fears of a nuclear war.
Protests against the invasion started Thursday in Russia and have continued daily ever since, even as Russian police have moved swiftly to crack down on the rallies and detain protesters.
The protests Sunday appeared smaller than the ones that took place on Thursday, the first day of Russia's attack in Ukraine, when thousands of people rallied in Moscow and St. Petersburg, but their true scale was hard to assess.
In St. Petersburg, where dozens gathered in the city center, police in full riot gear were grabbing one protester after another and dragging some into police vans, even though the demonstration was peaceful and no violent incidents have occurred.
According to the OVD-Info rights group that tracks political arrests, by Sunday afternoon police detained at least 356 Russians in 32 cities over anti-war demonstrations that day.