Left Front leader arrested after Moscow protest

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Russian authorities arrested about a dozen people, including the opposition Left Front's leader Sergei Udaltsov, after hundreds took part in an opposition rally in the centre of Moscow on Saturday.

Police spokeswoman Elena Perfilova told the Interfax news agency that Udaltsov was among a group arrested as they tried to march on a government office to deliver a petition at the end of an authorised demonstration.

Around 300 people took part in the protest, according to an AFP journalist at the scene, which was the latest in a series of monthly anti-government rallies in the Russian capital.

Many of the protestors chanted slogans such as "It's time for a change in power". Addressing the crowd, Udaltsov said the protest was a "great victory" as it had been authorised by the Moscow municipality after seven others had been banned.

Around 100 people also took part in a similar anti-government protest in Russia's second city Saint Petersburg although there were no arrests.

© 2011 AFP

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