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Russian opposition to meet on Triumfalnaya Square despite construction plans

© RIA Novosti . Ruslan Krivobok / Go to the photo bankLyudmila Alexeyeva, Moscow Helsinki human rights group
Lyudmila Alexeyeva, Moscow Helsinki human rights group - Sputnik International
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The Russian opposition plan to gather on central Moscow's Triumfalnaya Square on August 31 despite the authorities' plans to close the area to build an underground car park, a leading human rights activist said on Thursday.

The Russian opposition plan to gather on central Moscow's Triumfalnaya Square on August 31 despite the authorities' plans to close the area to build an underground car park, a leading human rights activist said on Thursday.

The Russian opposition movements traditionally hold unsanctioned March of Dissent rallies on Triumfalnaya Square on the last day of each month with 31 days in honor of Article 31 of the Russian Constitution, which guarantees freedom of assembly.

On July 31, the square was booked for a sports car display but some 200 protesters turned up regardless. Some 75 people were hauled away in police vans.

"We plan to go to the square on the 31st, but not to hold a rally because it has not been sanctioned," Lyudmila Alexeyeva of the Moscow Helsinki human rights group said. "We will go so as not to break the tradition," she added.

The opposition says the construction plans are just an attempt to crack down on protest in the capital.

Leader of the opposition party the Other Russia, Eduard Limonov, said the authorities do not plan to "dig a hole" on the square, while Alexeyeva said the underground car park was nowhere to be found in Moscow's development plan until 2025, which was adopted in May.

MOSCOW, August 26 (RIA Novosti) 

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