June 12, 2019 / 10:23 AM / in 8 days

Russian police detain opposition politician Alexei Navalny at protest

Policemen detain Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny during a rally in support of investigative journalist Ivan Golunov, who was detained by police, accused of drug offences and later freed from house arrest, in Moscow, Russia June 12, 2019. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russian police detained opposition politician Alexei Navalny and at least 35 others at a Moscow protest calling for punishment for police officers involved in the alleged framing of a journalist, monitors and a Reuters witness said.

Police abruptly dropped drugs charges a day earlier against journalist Ivan Golunov, a rare U-turn by the authorities in the face of anger from his supporters who said he was framed for his reporting.

But his supporters decided to go ahead with a protest on Wednesday, a public holiday in Russia, despite being warned by the authorities that their demonstration would be illegal.

The OVD-Info monitoring group said at least 35 people had been detained, while a Reuters witness saw police bundle opposition politician Navalny into a truck.

Reporting by Anton Zverev, Andrey Kuzmin and Maxim Shemetov; Writing by Andrew Osborn; Editing by Christian Lowe

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