‘No to War’ Say Thousands of Russians Protesting Against Attacks on Ukraine

Thousands of people took to streets across Russia to protest, saying “no to war.”

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Over 700 people were detained by the Russian police at anti-war protests across the country after President Vladimir Putin sent troops to invade Ukraine, stated foreign media reports.

Around 2,000 people gathered near Pushkin Square in central Moscow, and up to 1,000 people gathered in the former imperial capital Saint Petersburg, according to AFP.

Thousands of people took to streets across Russia to protest, saying “no to war” and standing in solidarity with Ukrainians. Videos of the anti-war protests have gone viral on social media.


On Thursday, dozens of journalists, reporters and media figures signed a petition condemning Russia’s operation in Ukraine. And more than a hundred municipal deputies from Moscow, St Petersburg, Samara, Ryazan and other cities signed an open letter to the citizens of Russia, urging them not to take part or stay silent.

“We, the deputies elected by the people, unreservedly condemn the attack of the Russian army on Ukraine,” the letter read. “This is an unparalleled atrocity for which there is and cannot be justification.”

Russian Celebrities Slam Putin’s Attack on Ukraine

Prominent Russian personalities from the entertainment, business and journalism sectors spoke out against the attacks.

Elena Chernenko, the veteran diplomatic correspondent for Kommersant newspaper, said she was shocked that Russia could launch a massive military operation against Ukraine.

After Putin announced the military operation, she wrote an open letter condemning the attack on Ukraine. “War has never been and will never be a method of conflict resolution and there are no excuses for it,” she wrote.

She claimed that she has been expelled from the diplomatic pool, reported The Guardian.

“Today, something happened that could and should never have happened. History will judge everything one day. Now I want to beg you to stop military action and sit down to negotiate,” Russian pop star Valery Meladze said in a video shared with his 500,000 followers on Instagram.

Ivan Urgant, the host of a popular talk show on state-run Channel One, posted a black square on Instagram with the caption “Fear and pain. No to war.” His show has been blacklisted.

Elena Kovalskaya, the director of the Meyerhold Center in Moscow, quit her job at the state-financed theatre in an act of protest. “It’s impossible to work for a murderer and receive your salary from him,” she said, stated the media report.

“We are now all trapped in this situation. There is no exit. We Russians will spend many years digging out from the consequences of this day,” television presenter Ksenia Sobchak also wrote on Instagram.


Russian Authorities Warn Anti-war Sympathisers

In recent years, Russia has toughened its protest laws.

Earlier on Thursday, Russian authorities warned anti-war sympathisers from gathering for protests.

The Investigative Committee, a government body that investigates major crimes, warned Russians of legal action for joining protests related to "the tense foreign political situation."

"One should be aware of the negative legal consequences of these actions in the form of prosecution up to criminal liability," the committee stated.

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