Opposition Rallies in Moscow to Demand Release of Protesters

(Bloomberg) -- Thousands of Russians shrugged off rainy weather to attend a sanctioned rally in central Moscow and demand the release of protesters who were detained at opposition events over the summer.

More than 25,000 people attended the demonstration on Sunday, according to the independent monitoring organization White Counter. That would make it the largest public protest since 60,000 attended a rally in August.

Opposition Rallies in Moscow to Demand Release of Protesters

Public outrage over harsh sentences given to several protesters arrested during unauthorized demonstrations against the exclusion of opposition candidates from local city council elections may have contributed to the authorities backtracking on a few of the cases.

In one instance, Pavel Ustinov, an actor who received a 3 1/2 year sentence for injuring an officer despite video evidence that appeared to exonerate him, was released on bail and granted an appeal. His hearing is scheduled for Monday.

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