- The protests in Russia included minors.
- There were many arrests as the result of the demonstrations.
- New protests are scheduled on the weekend.
The Russian people took to the streets on Saturday in support of the arrested Russian blogger and Kremlin critic, Alexey Navalny. However, not everyone who attended the protests supported Mr. Navalny. Some are just tired of the Russian President, Vladimir Putin, but they do not support Alexey Navalny.
According to Russian officials, there were protesters infected with the Coronavirus. Russia has a COVID-19 app, and this information was tracked. Hence, it is plausible that even more people now have the Coronavirus.
Furthermore, the TIkTok platform has been condemned by the Kremlin for allowing political videos geared to the under-16 audience. The platform was used by the protest organizers to attract minors to attend the protests, which is illegal in Russia.
The TikTok platform is now removing all content regarding support for Navalny that addresses the Russian minors. Hence, this should never have happened in the first place.
It should be noted that TikTok came under fire previously in the US for content delivered to underaged users. There were close to 80 minors detained at the protests, and their parents were contacted. They also will now be under review by the juvenile officers to make sure the individuals under the age of 16 will not participate again in such activities.
In addition, the lawyer Vladlen Los, employed by the Navalny Anti-Corruption Fund (FBK), has been detained. It should be noted that he does not have Russian citizenship and has been an overstay.
Los was hiding from Russian law enforcement and was located in a Moscow hotel. He was charged with disobeying the police and served with a notice to leave Russia by January 25th. As a result, Los is automatically banned from entry to Russia for the next two years.
However, it is highly likely, he will be be permanently banned from Russia. As during his arrest, Los stated that he intends to meddle into the Russian election in 2024.
The videographer Pavel Zelensky, employed by the FBK, was arrested a week earlier. In his tweets, he suggested physically harming the Kremlin elites. The profane tweets also included asking others to start causing bodily harm to the elected Russian officials.
There are more protests scheduled this weekend. Nevertheless, these protests will die down within a month. It is very unlikely that Alexey Navalny will be released soon. It is plausible that Navalny will spend at least 2.5 years in prison.
Moreover, the German government officials do not see the grounds for the arrest of Alexei Navalny and are calling for his release. The French government officials believe there should be new sanctions laid against Russian officials due to the Navalny arrest.
Interestingly, Navalny made his own list of whom he wants to be on the list from the Russian oligarchs. These actions will only anger the Russian populous, as sanctions hurt the Russian economy. Many in Russia believe that Navalny is a foreign agent and he can’t be trusted.
Even within the ranks of the opposition, he is not seen as a possible contender to be Putin’s successor.