Russian parents face having their one-year-old son taken from them because they took him to an anti-Putin rally as officials crackdown on opposition
- Over 1,000 people were arrested during the rally on July 27
- They are accused of endangering the boy’s life by passing him to a third person
- Authorities have arrested 2,400 people in two weeks of protest in Moscow
- Sergei Fomin, who faces 8 years in prison, used a baby to evade police
A couple could have their one-year-old baby boy taken from them after Russian authorities petitioned a court in Moscow to strip them of their parental rights.
The pair took their baby to a political rally on July 27 in support of an opposition party in the midst of a citywide crackdown on dissent by Russian authorities.
According to the Moscow prosecutor’s office: The parents ‘handed their young child, who was in a helpless state due to his age, to a third person thus endangering the boy’s health and life,’ the prosecutor’s office said.
A Moscow couple could have their one-year-old baby boy taken from them as the Moscow prosecutor’s office seeks to strip them of their parental rights for taking him to an unauthorised opposition rally
‘By exploiting the child, the parents abused their parental rights.’
The prosecutors said they were probing other cases that saw parents take their young babies and minors to the unauthorised opposition rallies.
According to the Investigative Committee, activist Sergei Fomin who has a warrant out for his arrest, had fled law enforcement on July 27 by holding a baby and walking through a cordon.
He and a number of other people face up to eight years in prison for taking part in ‘mass unrest.’
According to opposition parties, this is part of a campaign of ‘political terror’ to crush protests and dissent.
Moscow police have cracked down on opposition protests over the last weeks, opening a probe into ‘mass unrest’ and making almost 2,400 arrests at just two rallies. The activists aren’t happy with the lack of opposition representation for the Parliamentary elections in September
Over the past few weeks, thousands in Moscow have taken part in protests over the lack of political opposition from the parliament elections in September.
The authorities have retaliated with a crackdown, opening a probe into “mass unrest” and making nearly 2,400 arrests at two unauthorised rallies over the past two weeks.
Yevgeny Bunimovich, the children’s rights ombudsman for Moscow said using children to ‘blackmail’ protesters was unacceptable.
‘In my opinion, such things could not be grounds for stripping anyone of parental rights,’ Bunimovich said on Echo of Moscow radio.
‘This is completely unacceptable. A line has been crossed.’
Mikhail Fedotov, the Kremlin-friendly head of the Russian Human Rights Council, said the move would create a dangerous precedent.
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