Putin Lifts Ban on Protests in Olympic Sochi
Russian President Vladimir Putin has lifted a ban on public demonstrations in Sochi during the Winter Olympics.
Various Russian campaign groups had complained that a ban on rallies imposed as part of a security crackdown violated the constitution.
Rally organizers still need to receive police approval on the number of participants, location or marching route, and time interval before going ahead with demonstrations during the Olympic period from January 7 through March 21, according to a statement posted on the Kremlin website Saturday.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said that in practice, local organizers will work with city and regional authorities to pick a city square where rallies or protests could be held freely.
Peskov said that the demonstrations will have to get approval from Sochi city officials as well as the regional Interior Ministry and security services, RIA Novosti informs.
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