Russia: Musicians protest against illegal police detentions

10 July 2015


“Police is attacking artists, taking them to police stations, confiscating their instruments, giving them court summons, and the courts then appoint huge fines based on various articles, depending on their imagination,” wrote Oleg Mokryakov, a leader of one of the music collectives playing on Arbat street, on his Facebook page.

On 28 June 2015 those walking on Arbat street in Moscow could observe a group of around 40 musicians protesting, and on 2 July a series of single-person protests also took place, with musicians and other performers standing with their gear, their money boxes, their mouths and their hands bound with duct tape to symbolise “their voices being shut down.”

The musicians’ main motivation for staging the protests is the rise in police detentions and fines, usually 10,000 rubles for organising an unsanctioned gathering of spectators, which they believe have no legal grounds. Oleg Mokryakov wrote that with their actions, the musicians wanted to draw the attention of the public and the local government to the issue. Mokryakov uses his Facebook page to document the detentions across Moscow, and he posted a handful of photos from the protests.

This was reported by Global Voices. Read the full article:

» Global Voices – 9 July 2015:
Moscow Street Musicians Tape Their Mouths Shut to Protest Police Pressure
Article by Tetyana Lokot

Photo above: Single-person protest by a street musician on Arbat street in Moscow on 2 July 2015. Photo by Oleg Mokryakov.

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