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Several Policemen Injured In Moscow Riots Ahead Of Putin Inauguration

At least 30 police officers have been injured in clashes with demonstrators that broke out during an Opposition rally in Moscow ahead of Vladimir Putin's inauguration as President.

Sunday's demonstration turned violent after protest leader Sergei Udaltsov led a mass sit-in demanding they be allowed to march directly to the Kremlin and invalidation of Putin's victory in the disputed March 4 elections.

Protesters attacked police with bottles and stones, seriously injuring several officers, who have been hospitalized. A number of protesters were also injured in the clashes.

According to the state-run RIA Novosti news agency, 436 people were detained during the riots, but most of them were released and ordered to pay administrative fines. Those found guilty of assaulting officers may face up to ten years in prison.

Udaltsov, leader of the Left Front movement, was among those detained along with anti-corruption activist Alexei Navalny and Boris Nemtsov, Opposition leader and Yeltsin-era Deputy Prime Minister.

Some 8,000 protesters took part in the rally, which was authorized only for 5,000 people, the report said.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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