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Russian Government Seeks to Ban Protest

Euro News | March 31 2004

Testing the right to protest. That is what demonstrators said they were doing outside Russia's lower house of parliament, the State Duma. Police, however, moved in and detained a small group of them, including a former MP, who is the deputy head of the opposition Yabloko party.

MPs are set to consider legislation that would ban protests near government buildings, a law that critics slam as authoritarian. Earlier, parliamentarians gave the go-ahead to separate legislation that increases the time a suspected terrorist can be held in custody without charge. If given final approval, the law will increase the time limit from 10 to 30 days.