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Russian Police Mass Arrest Protestors Fighting for High Living Standards and Transparency; State Media Refuses to Acknowledge Events

By: Dolan Ziegler

· Global Affairs

The Russian Revolution started in 1917 to overthrow their leader because the people’s demands were not met, and in 2019 a similar situation has arisen. Since 2017, Russian protests have claimed that their government is taking away their rights, and for the past two years, they have kept fighting. As Russian police arrest, many protesters and journalists report on this topic, it is realized that many people protesting are young and financially well; unlike the literal revolution mentioned prior. According to sources like the BBC, Putin still holds an approval rating of 63% as of 2018.

However, Russian police recently arrested over 1,100 demonstrators in the past week, during protests centered around government transparency and falling living standards. “What the authorities don’t want is protests in Moscow sparking protests in megalopolises across the country,” said Lev Gudkov, a sociologist and head of Moscow-based pollster Levada Center. “That’s the nightmare scenario.” Independent media organizations have fallen victim to hacks while they were trying to stream the protests, and Kremlin state media refused to even acknowledge the events, focusing instead on a state barbeque. Other state-affiliated media gave airtime to spin specialists who painted protesters as “traitors.” When contacted for comment by foriegn media, Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, said he was on vacation until Aug. 12.
Newsweek created a report that around 67% of the Russian population was aware that their elitist class was corrupt and Transparency International gave Russia a low score of 28 out of 100 in corruption; ranking among nations like Iran, Mexico, and Kenya. Many of the countries younger generation believe that their rights are being taken away and that the government is heading down a dangerous path for democracy. Protesters are calling for more fair elections, most likely to oust any leadership they see as corrupt. The Russian government has openly accused the United States of intentionally spreading anti-Putin propaganda, and fueling the demonstrations.

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