An update and a UK protest (tonight) against the aforementioned victimisation of Russian leftist activists, via Chto Delat's Thomas (who is also responsible for alterting me to this hilarious exchange on the Gazprom Tower and some spectacular churnalism by Mary Dejevsky). Cf also Kagarlitsky.
There are two grassroots antifascist activists (Alexei Gaskarov and Maxim Solopov) who are currently in custody in Moscow on fabricated charges facing the prospect of very heavy prison sentences. Their campaign put a temporary halt to construction of a planned Moscow-Petersburg toll highway through the Khimki Forest. In essence, they have been taken hostage by local authorities and police officials. If they are tried and convicted they could face seven years in prison. Meanwhile, police and other law enforcement agencies continue their hunt against other activists, especially those with connections to the antifascist movement.
Over the past three years, forest defenders have suffered numerous arrests and other forms of harassment by local police, as well as physical attacks carried out by “anonymous” hired thugs, including neo-Nazis. These actions by the Khimki administration and its partners are explained by the significant commercial interest they have in seeing that the highway construction project is completed.
The next pre-trial detention hearing for the two young men is scheduled for late September. International Days of Action are taking place to demand their release. Our main slogans are Freedom for Alexei Gaskarov and Maxim Solopov! and End the Persecution of Forest Defenders and Antifascists! For more details, go to the Khimki Battle website.
This demonstration will now be gathering not at the embassy itself as planned, but on Bayswater Road opposite the entrance to Kensington Palace Gardens. Banners and placards welcome. Called by Green Left and Socialist Resistance.