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Memorial Marred by Clashes, Arrests

Published: January 22, 2014 (Issue # 1794)



  • Anarchists and anti-fascist activists holding an unauthorized march on Vasilyevsky Ostrov’s Bolshoi Prospekt Sunday.
    Photo: Sergey Chernov / SPT

At least ten anti-fascist demonstrators were detained in St. Petersburg on Sunday, during the fifth anniversary of the double murder of anti-fascist activists Stanislav Markelov and Anastasia Baburova in Moscow. The event was marked across Russia and in a number of European countries.

A group of around 50 anarchists and anti-fascist activists assembled for an unauthorized march on Bolshoi Prospekt on Vasilyevsky Ostrov Sunday, partly obstructing traffic. Some members of the crowd threw smoke bombs, lit flares and chanted anti-fascist and anti-capitalist slogans.

Earlier, the city administration refused to authorize either a march or a full-fledged rally in memory of Markelov and Baburova based on what organizers call a technicality. According to the organizers, the committee on law, order and public security declined to accept the application on Dec. 31 because it was more than 15 days ahead of the event.

When the organizers submitted the application on the first working day of the new year, Jan. 9, they were told that it had been submitted too late. The law stipulates that applications be submitted between ten to 15 working days ahead of any planned rally. The activists were given permission instead to hold an assembly on the Field of Mars on the condition that sound-amplifying equipment was not used. After meeting on the Field of Mars, some activists decided to go ahead with the unauthorized rally.

Moving quickly, the marchers walked about 650 meters amid smoke and stopped cars, carrying flares, red-and-black anarchist flags and banners reading “Anarchism. Anti-Fascism. Autonomous Action” and “Let’s Protect the City from Fascism.” The activists dispersed when a police van stopped next to them six minutes after they started to march. Two police officers detained two young women who appeared to be with the marchers and took them to the 20th precinct station located nearby. Later, the activists and the Help for the Detained group reported three more detentions. All those arrested were charged with jaywalking.

Neo-Nazis Attack Anti-Fascist Group

Five or six people were also detained for an alleged altercation with neo-Nazis in a cafe on Ploshchad Vosstaniya. According to eyewitness reports, neo-Nazis followed the anti-fascist activists to the site where the unsanctioned march was initially scheduled to be held at 4:30 p.m. and reportedly initiated the clash. According to one of the anti-fascist activists who asked not to be named, a criminal misconduct case was opened after several nationalists filed reports with the police. Organizers postponed the start of the march until 6 p.m. and moved the location to Vasilyevsky Ostrov.

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ALL ABOUT TOWN

Wednesday, Oct. 22


English teachers can expect to receive a few useful pointers today from Evgeny Kalashnikov, the British Council regional teacher, during the EFL Seminar this afternoon hosted by the British Book Center. The topic of today’s seminar is “Grammar Practice.”


Young Petersburgers will get the chance to jumpstart their careers at “Professional Growth,” a job fair and forum featuring more than 40 major Russian and international companies vying for potential candidates for future positions. The forum not only is a chance to network but also to learn more about the modern business world and to understand what it takes to get the job you want.



Thursday, Oct. 23


AmCham’s Public Relations Committee meeting is scheduled to meet this morning at 9 a.m. in their office in the New St. Isaac Office Center.


Sportsmen get their chance to stock up on all kinds of gear at the Hunting and Fishing 2014 exhibition starting today at Lenexpo. Everything from rods and reels to boats, motorcycles and equipment for underwater hunting will be on sale so that any avid outdoorsman can always be prepared.



Friday, Oct. 24


SPIBA’s ongoing “Breakfast with the Director” series continues today, featuring Tomas Hajek, Managing Director of the Northwest Division at Danone Russia. Hajek will be discussing collaborations between businesses from different cultures. The meeting is at 9 a.m. at the Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel and all who wish to attend must confirm their participation by Oct. 23.


Get your gong on at “Sounds of the Universe,” a concert at the city planetarium this evening incorporating six different gongs to create relaxing songs that will transport you upwards into the stratosphere. Tickets are 700 rubles ($17).



Saturday, Oct. 25


AVA Expo, the eighth edition of the event revolving around all things pop culture, returns to Lenexpo this weekend. Geeks, nerds, dweebs and dorks will have their chance to talk science fiction and explore a variety of international pop culture. Tickets for the event can be purchased on their website at avaexpo.ru.



Sunday, Oct. 26


Zenit St. Petersburg returns home for the first time in nearly a month as they host Mordovia Saransk in a Russian Premier League game. Currently at the top of the league thanks to their undefeated start to the season, the northern club hopes to extend the gap between them and second-place CSKA Moscow and win the title for the first time in three years. Tickets are available at the stadium box office or on the club’s website.



Monday, Oct. 27


Today marks the end of the art exhibit “Neophobia” at the Erarta Museum. Artists Alexey Semichov and Andrei Kuzmin took a neo-modernist approach to represent the array of fears that are ever-present throughout our lives. Tickets are 200 rubles ($4.90).



Tuesday, Oct. 28


The Domina Prestige St. Petersburg hotel plays host to SPIBA’s Marketing and Communications Committee’s round table discussion on “Government Relations Practices in Russia” this morning. The discussion starts at 9:30 a.m. and participation must be confirmed by Oct. 24.



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