Russia has officially invaded Ukraine, but in the midst of this, Russians are protesting and condemning the war.
As Russian President Vladimir Putin launched the attack on Ukraine, Russian authorities warned anti-war protesters not to gather, Voice of America News reported.
In response to calls on social media to protest Putin’s aggression, the Investigative Committee, a Russian government body that investigates serious crimes, warned Russians that there could be legal repercussions if they did protest.
“One should be aware of the negative legal consequences of these actions in the form of prosecution up to criminal liability,” the committee said, VOA reported.
The Russian interior ministry reportedly said it will also take “all necessary measures to ensure public order.”
Despite these warnings, though, Russians gathered throughout the country to protest the war on Ukraine, ABC News reported in a tweet.
In response, Russian police are arresting demonstrators, according to the Daily Beast.
“The Kremlin has moved swiftly to stifle any dissent at home after unleashing a devastating military offensive in Ukraine on Thursday,” the Daily Beast reported.
But protesters have been marching in St. Petersburg and Moscow, even though they are in danger of being arrested.
People all across Twitter have been tweeting videos from the protests and updating that hundreds of Russians are being detained.
Putin’s hometown protesting his war against Ukraine. https://t.co/DispolGMSZ
— Christopher Miller (@ChristopherJM) February 24, 2022
Protesters arrested in Moscow and St. Petersburg at demonstrations against Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.
— ABC News (@ABC) February 24, 2022
In Moscow, hundreds of Russian marched and chanted “No to war!”
Сейчас в Москве. Люди скандируют «Нет войне!». pic.twitter.com/yLOAgGztVc
— Тот самый Мартин (@martin_camera) February 24, 2022
The protests show that many Russians want to stand up to Russia’s war on Ukraine, even though many are quickly being taken by police, as seen in numerous videos.
WATCH: Anti-war protesters in downtown Moscow are quickly detained by police pic.twitter.com/Qjf7epY4Mj
— BNO News (@BNONews) February 24, 2022
In addition to these protests, more than 100 municipal deputies from cities across Russia, signed an open letter to the citizens of the Russian Federation.
“We, the deputies elected by the people, unreservedly condemn the attack of the Russian army on Ukraine,” the letter said. “This is an unparalleled atrocity for which there is and cannot be justification.”
The municipal deputies said that this war will lead to thousands of deaths and injuries and will isolate Russia and ruin the economy.
At the end of the deputies’ appeal, they urged the Russian people not to be part of the aggression toward Ukraine, to not approve of it and to not be silent.
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