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Jul 16, 2017 | 13:14 GMT

1 min read

Rallies Across Russia: A Visual Anthology

Russian police detained over 200 people on June 12 at protests called for by Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.
(OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)
Editor's Note:

Throughout the first half of the year, protests have swept across Russia time and again. Demonstrators, many of whom were answering the calls of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, have flooded into the streets of more than 145 cities across the country to demand an end to corruption, better standards of living and some form of democracy.

The unrest has underscored a fundamental change taking place on Russia's political scene. Whereas the mass protests of 2011-12 were sparked by singular events that took place during an election season, the current demonstrations grew organically out of deeply rooted grievances with how the government has managed the country and the economy. In this visual anthology, we explore the opposition's efforts to demand change in the face of the Kremlin's attempts to silence it. 

A protestor is carried away by Russian police during an unauthorized rally in central Moscow on March 26.

Russian police carry away a protester during an unauthorized rally in central Moscow on March 26. That day, thousands demonstrated across Russia to protest government corruption. The rallies were encouraged via social media by prominent Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, who himself was arrested. Navalny called for the protests after publishing a detailed report that accused Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev of controlling a property empire through a questionable network of nonprofit organizations, which had been the subject of earlier government corruption exposes.

(ALEXANDER UTKIN/AFP/Getty Images)
Protesters march through Moscow's Tverskaya St. during an unauthorized anti-corruption rally on March 26.

Protesters march through Moscow's Tverskaya St. during an unauthorized anti-corruption rally on March 26.

(VASILY MAXIMOV/AFP/Getty Images)
Detainees gesture from a police bus after being taken into custody during the March 26 anti-corruption protest in Moscow.

Detainees gesture from a police bus after being taken into custody during the March 26 anti-corruption protest in Moscow. Protesters broadcast their detentions on social media, complaining of being held in vans or makeshift cells without food.

(ALEXANDER UTKIN/AFP/Getty Images)
The Kremlin critic was sentenced on March 27 to 15 days in prison for resisting police during the anti-corruption rally.

Navalny appears handcuffed in a Moscow court on March 30. The Kremlin critic was sentenced on March 27 to 15 days in prison for resisting police during the anti-corruption rally. The short sentence was surprising, considering the reach of his influence over members of the opposition movement. His campaign has continued to open offices and hold rallies throughout Russia, and his operations have not slowed since his release.

(KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)
An opposition supporter wearing tape over his mouth waits in line outside of Russian President Vladimir Putin's administrative office during a protest in Moscow on April 29.

An opposition supporter wearing tape over his mouth stands in line outside of Russian President Vladimir Putin's administrative office during a protest in Moscow on April 29. He is waiting to turn in a petition against Putin's candidacy for the 2018 presidential election. Navalny continues to campaign, even though he's prohibited from running for the presidency because of his embezzlement convictions -- charges he claims were fabricated by the Kremlin.

(NATALIA KOLESNIKOVA/AFP/Getty Images)
Marking the five-year anniversary of the anti-Putin protest in Bolotnaya Square, supporters of the Russian opposition participate in the annual rally in Moscow on May 6.

Marking the five-year anniversary of the anti-Putin protest in Bolotnaya Square, supporters of the Russian opposition participate in the annual rally in Moscow on May 6. The original Bolotnaya Square protests were unique because many political opposition groups joined forces against the Kremlin. Police responded harshly, and protesters and police alike were injured.

(KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP/Getty Images)
Russian police officers detain a protester in St. Petersburg on June 12.

Russian police officers detain a protester in St. Petersburg on June 12. The city recorded the most arrests during the nationwide rally, totaling nearly 1,000.

(OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)
Anti-corruption protesters march in Moscow on June 12 holding posters that read "corruption steals the future" and "miserable cowardly thief."

Anti-corruption protesters march in Moscow on June 12 holding posters that read "corruption steals the future" and "miserable cowardly thief." The duck image symbolized a video released by Navalny that exposed an enormous house on Medvedev's estate intended for his ducks.

(MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)
Police officers restrain an angry young protester in the St. Petersburg rally on June 12.

Police officers restrain an angry young protester in the St. Petersburg rally on June 12. A majority of protesters were in their late teens and early 20s -- a sign of the generational change occurring in Russia. This younger generation, unfamiliar with the tumultuous collapse of the Soviet Union in the 1990s, is seeking change.

(OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)
A woman holds a poster bearing an image of Putin with the words "that's all" in central St. Petersburg on June 12.

A woman holds a poster bearing an image of Putin with the words "that's all" in central St. Petersburg on June 12. Putin is poised to run for his fourth term, marking 18 years in power. Though he has not announced a bid to run, economic hardship, regional instability and political discord mean that he is the only Russian politician who is still relatively popular.

(OLGA MALTSEVA/AFP/Getty Images)
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