What Happened: Protesters gathered in Moscow and St. Petersburg on Feb. 10 to demonstrate against the detention of political prisoners, The Moscow Times reported. Authorities have arrested seven protesters in St. Petersburg and at least two demonstrators in Moscow.
Why It Matters: Although anti-government protests in Russia have been relatively calm recently, additional rallies and widespread demonstrations against detaining political prisoners might increase pressure on Moscow and lead to a combination of crackdowns and concessions from the Russian government.
Background: The Russian government has been increasingly targeting independent and foreign-supported organizations since Moscow passed legislation in 2015 banning organizations it deems "undesirable."
- Putin's Russia Embraces a Eurasian Identity (Jan. 17, 2019)
- The Curious Story of an American Arrested by the Kremlin (Jan. 8, 2019)
- A Journey Into the Russian Enigma (Dec. 13, 2018)