MOSCOW: police have detained a political activist during an opposition rally after he called for demonstrators to move to a square in the city not on the official protest route.
Sergei Udaltsov, one of the rally organisers and head of the Left Front movement, was held for "provocation," police told the Interfax news agency.
Police also detained 25 ultra-nationalists who had planned to take an unauthorised route through the Russian capital.
The opposition kasparov.ru website reported that dozens had been detained in St Petersburg after they had attempted to engage in a demonstration that had not received official permission.
Around 60 demonstrators were also held in Nizhni Novgorod, a city 400 kilometres east of Moscow. (Monitoring Desk)