Russia arrests over 1,300 after Putin mobilizes troops

Russian police block the street during an unsanctioned anti-war protest rally on Arbat Street in Moscow, Russia, September 21, 2022.

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More than 1,300 people have been arrested after Russian President Vladimir Putin called in more troops to fight in Ukraine, according to the independent human rights group OVD-Info.

About 1,307 people it is said As of Thursday morning, detainees were in 39 cities across the country, with the capital Moscow (at least 527) and St. Petersburg (at least 480) having the most arrests.

Nearly 50 people were arrested in Yekaterinburg, the country’s fourth-largest city, and dozens more were detained in several Siberian cities.

One-way flight prices from Russia soar after Putin announcement and pictures social media There appeared to be long queues at the border post.

In a rare pre-recorded televised speech on Wednesday, Putin ordered the partial militarization of reservists to strengthen troops in Ukraine, a highly unpopular move despite Russia’s draconian laws against criticizing the military and Ukraine’s war. sparked nationwide protests.

Russia has yet to declare war on Ukraine, despite its invasion of Ukraine in February, which it called a “special military operation.”

Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu said the mobilization of the army would add 300,000 personnel to serve in military operations in Ukraine.

An activist participates in an unsanctioned protest on Arbat Street in Moscow, Russia, September 21, 2022. The sign plays “No Burial” on the word mobilization.

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Ministry of the Interior of Russia Say Russian Interior Ministry soldiers take “additional measures” to counter anti-war protests and “ensure public order”.

“Complications of the operational situation have been prevented,” the ministry said in a statement.

“In some areas, there were attempts to conduct unauthorized operations, but very few participants were gathered. All of them were stopped and the perpetrators were taken into custody and brought back to the territorial police force for investigation and prosecution.”

‘Reckless’ and ‘Irresponsible’

In what was widely interpreted as an escalation speech, Putin warned the West that he was prepared to use all available means to protect Russian territory. His remarks were seen as a veiled threat to his readiness to use nuclear weapons.

During the conflict with Ukraine, Putin has repeatedly mentioned Russia’s nuclear weapons. Still, doubts remain over whether Moscow will actually deploy the weapon, which analysts say could amount to waging a third world war.

US President Joe Biden Condemned Putin’s threat to use nuclear weapons and urged UN allied leaders to reject Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

Speaking at the United Nations headquarters in New York City, Biden accused the Kremlin of making “reckless” and “irresponsible” threats and said, “Nuclear war is unwinnable and should not be fought.”

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky it is said In an interview with the German online TV channel Bild on Wednesday, he said he did not believe the world would allow Putin to use nuclear weapons.

— CNBC’s Holly Ellyatt contributed to this report.

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