Russian opposition leader Eduard Limonov and twenty of his backers have been detained during an unsanctioned rally at Moscow's downtown Triumfalnaya Square on Monday, a RIA Novosti correspondent reported from the scene.
Opposition and human rights activists rally on the last day of every month with 31 days in honor of Article 31 of the Russian Constitution, which guarantees freedom of assembly.
Rights activists led by Moscow Helsinki Group head Lyudmila Alexeyeva applied for a 1,500-strong rally, but the authorities allowed only 1,000 to participate.
All in all, the sanctioned rally on Triumfalnaya Square gathered 500 people, as well as another 150 journalists. Some 2,000 police and security force personnel were deployed near Triumfalnaya Square.
The protest passed calmly, but upon its completion, several dozen backers of Limonov's Other Russia party tried to hold their own unsanctioned protest near the square.
Twenty of them, including Limonov, were detained, Moscow police spokesman Viktor Biryukov said.
An unsanctioned rally was also held in Russia's second largest city of St. Petersburg where 60 participants were detained.
MOSCOW, January 31 (RIA Novosti)