Russia-Ukraine war: More than 1,300 arrests after protests erupt


russia protests

A partial military mobilisation has been announced, with 300,000 reservists set to be called up (Picture: EPA/AFP/REUTERS)

More than 1,300 people have been arrested in Russia after protesters took to the streets to object to Vladimir Putin’s mobilisation order.

Dramatic images show demonstrators clashing with police – with 38 areas across the country involved.

Many people were detained in St Petersburg and Moscow, according to OVD-Info.

There are reports of officers with batons dealing with crowds ‘brutally’ in the capital.

Large protests haven’t been seen in Russia for five or six months after the Kremlin introduced new laws to silence dissent.

But fresh unrest comes after the Russian president announced a partial military mobilisation, with 300,000 reservists set to be called up to fight in Ukraine.

It appeared to be an admission that Moscow’s war against Ukraine was not going according to plan after nearly seven months of fighting.

Russians started receiving phone calls almost immediately after the announcement this morning.

Russian law enforcement officers detain men during an unsanctioned rally, after opposition activists called for street protests against the mobilisation of reservists ordered by President Vladimir Putin, in Moscow, Russia September 21, 2022. REUTERS/REUTERS PHOTOGRAPHER TPX IMAGES OF THE DAY

Shocking scenes are emerging from Moscow (Picture: Reuters)

Russian police officers detain men during an unsanctioned rally, after opposition activists called for street protests against the mobilisation of reservists ordered by President Vladimir Putin, in Moscow, Russia September 21, 2022. REUTERS/REUTERS PHOTOGRAPHER

Some police are reportedly dealing with protesters ‘brutally’ (Picture: Reuters)

Russian police officers stand guard during an unsanctioned rally, after opposition activists called for street protests against the mobilisation of reservists ordered by President Vladimir Putin, in Moscow, Russia September 21, 2022. REUTERS/REUTERS PHOTOGRAPHER

Russian officers stand guard on the streets in Moscow (Picture: Reuters)

People line up during an unsanctioned rally, after Russian opposition activists called for street protests against the mobilisation of reservists ordered by President Vladimir Putin, in Moscow, Russia September 21, 2022. REUTERS/REUTERS PHOTOGRAPHER

People risk arrest as they line up in opposition to the police (Picture: Reuters)

It comes as the Kremlin attempts to regain ground in the face of an unexpected counter-attack by Ukraine’s forces.

Moscow-controlled regions in eastern and southern Ukraine are set to hold ‘sham referendums’ on becoming parts of Russia.

This could give the Kremlin the pretext for a wider war as Putin would be able to claim parts of his state were being attacked.

In his biggest speech since troops invaded Ukraine earlier, Putin also warned he ‘wasn’t bluffing’ when he vowed that Russia would use its weapons of mass destruction if its territory was threatened. 

He accused the West of ‘nuclear blackmail’ and claimed ‘high-ranking representatives of the leading Nato state’ had discussed the possibility of using weapons of mass destruction against Russia.

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