Protesters supporting arrested ‘Meduza’ correspondent Ivan Golunov released from police custody
Update: the protesters have been released.
Police officers have released protesters who had set up individual pickets on June 7 to demand the release of Meduza correspondent Ivan Golunov. The police did not file reports against the protesters, wrote Grigory Tumanov, a journalst who was among those arrested.
A total of 12 people were arrested near the Moscow headquarters of Russia’s Internal Affairs Ministry. Most of them were journalists.
The picket in support of Golunov is ongoing. So far, police have not continued to arrest protesters, but they have issued calls to disperse. Because any public demonstration involving more than one person must be approved by the government in advance to have legal status in Russia, the picketers are standing in line to take turns holding up their signs by the building.
The YouTube channel “Moscow’s Megaphone” has been livestreaming the picket.
Ivan Golunov was arrested on June 6. He was charged with attempting to sell drugs in large quantities. Golunov denies the charges against him and argues that the drugs were planted. After he was arrested, Golunov was prevented for more than 12 hours from contacting an attorney. He was beaten at the police station where he was held and was subsequently prohibited from calling an ambulance.
Police also refused to take hand swabs and nail clippings from Golunov for the purpose of determining whether or not he touched the packets of drugs in question.