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 US Department of State urges Russia to immediately release all peaceful protesters

The United States has condemned multiple arrests of protesters in Russia on Sunday, March 26, and called it a neglect of democratic values.

Censor.NET reports quoting Interfax-Ukraine.

The United States strongly condemns the arrest of hundreds of peaceful demonstrators across Russia on Sunday. The detention of peaceful demonstrators, human rights activists and journalists is a trampling on basic democratic values, said Deputy Department Spokesperson Mark Toner in a written response to Interfax-Ukraine.

The diplomat noted the U.S. was dismayed to learn about the arrest of opposition politician Alexei Navalny after his arrival at the rally, as well as about police raids against the anti-corruption NGO that Navalny leads.

The United States will monitor this situation and urges the Russian government to immediately release all peaceful demonstrators, Toner said.

Read more: Over 1,000 detained in anti-corruption rally in Moscow

On March 26, an unsanctioned anti-corruption rally took place in Moscow. The police report up to 8,000 people took part in the event. Its organizer, opposition politician Aleksei Navalny, was detained at the beginning of the rally.

Similar anti-corruption protests took place in many other cities across Russia. The police apprehended dozens of participants in unauthorized rallies in Vladivostok, Yuzhno-Sakhalinsk, Khabarovsk, Yekaterinburg and other cities.

Read more: Navalny, colleagues spent night at police station, his NGO office raided

The protests are said to have been triggered by Alexei Navalny's recent report exposing posh property of Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev.

According to official data by Russia's Interior Ministry, about 500 people have been detained.
   
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