July 31, 2009 / 5:27 PM / 10 years ago

Russia police detain anti-Kremlin protesters

MOSCOW, July 31 (Reuters) - Russian riot police detained an opposition leader and dozens of anti-Kremlin activists for trying to hold an unsanctioned rally in central Moscow on Friday, officials said.

Hundreds of police officers surrounded Moscow’s Triumfalnaya Square and forced 20 activists and one journalist into waiting vans, a Reuters witness said. A police spokesman said 47 people were detained in all, some even before the rally began.

Police detained writer and activist Eduard Limonov, head of the outlawed National Bolshevik Party, while he was driving to the protest, his office aid in a statement. Police confirmed Limonov had been detained.

Around 100 protesters attended the march, some shouting "shame" and "freedom of assembly" as the police closed in on the rally. (Reporting by Aydar Buribayev; Writing by Conor Humphries; Editing by Jon Boyle)

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