Ukraine-Russia war live: Over 50 arrested as Russians protest Putin’s sham election amid Moscow drone attacks

Russian gas pipeline explodes in huge fireball blast amid series of ‘Ukrainian strikes’

Over 50 Russians have been detained amid demonstrations across Russia today as critics of Vladimir Putin head to the polls to protest his regime.

Up to 51 have been detained across 14 Russian cities today. There are at least 23 detainees in Kazan and ten in Moscow, according to the OVD-Info protest-monitoring group.

Known as “Noon Against Putin”, Russian citizens frustrated with the leader’s rule are being called to head to the voting booths all at the same time: Midday, 17 March, or 9am UK time.

“We want this dark time to end. We want a clear, normal future,” the campaign’s website says. “But we, citizens of our country, with our pain and our hope, are not noticeable either to the authorities or to each other.

“At noon on Sunday, 17 March, the last day of voting, when we come to the polling stations, we will show others and see for ourselves that there are many of us . We can become a force that cannot be hidden behind drawn percentages.”

It comes as Russia claimed Ukraine had fired up to four drones at Moscow as part of “terrorist activity” to disrupt the Kremlin’s sham election.


Pictured: Russians vote in sham election

A woman is checked before entering a polling station in Moscow, Russia, on Sunday


Two voters cast their ballots, which include Putin and three Kremlin-vetted candidates, on Sunday


Alexander Butler17 March 2024 11:34


Russia elections: Everything you need to know about sham presidential polls that will hand Putin fifth term

Alexander Butler17 March 2024 10:58


Up to 47 Russians detained during protest vote

More than 47 people have been detained in connection to the presidential election taking place in Russia today, the OVD-Info protest-monitoring group has said.

The organisation said the arrests had taken place across 13 cities. Russians turned out to vote as part of a Noon protest against Vladimir Putin.

In Moscow, voters could be seen queuing up outside polling stations as police stood nearby.

Alexander Butler17 March 2024 10:56


Pictured: Russians line up at noon following Yulia Navalny’s call for protest

Police officers stand guard next to Russians queuing at a polling station in Moscow around noon on Sunday


People stand in a line to enter a polling station around noon on the final day of the presidential election in Moscow, Russia


Alexander Butler17 March 2024 10:30


Putin’s opposition know his election is a sham. They have a plan for change

Alexander Butler17 March 2024 10:00


Noon Against Putin: Alexei Navalny’s final plan to disrupt Russia’s sham elections

Alexander Butler17 March 2024 08:40


Call for protests as Russian sham election enters day 3

Critics of president Vladimir Putin have called for protests at Russian polling stations on the final day of the sham presidential elections.

There have been sporadic acts of protests in the first two days of the polls, with a spate of arrests of Russians accused of pouring dye into ballot boxes.

Alexei Navalny, Kremlin critic and opposition leader, before his death had called on Russians to stage protests on Sunday. Now, his widow Yulia Navalnaya, has reiterated his call.

She called for protesters to spoil ballots by writing “Navalny” on them or vote for candidates instead of Mr Putin, AFP reported

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar17 March 2024 08:00


Zelensky says Ukraine strikes reveal Russian military ‘vulnerabilities’

Ukrainian president Volodymyr Zelensky said recent successful Ukraine drone strikes on Russian targets revealed vulnerabilities in the Russian war machine.

Ukraine has struck multiple oil refineries in Russia this week, reaching targets in Krasnodar, Samara, Ryazan, Kaluga, Nizhny Novgorod, and Leningrad.

“These weeks have demonstrated to many that the Russian war machine has vulnerabilities that we can reach with our weapons,” Mr Zelensky said in his evening address.

“I am grateful to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, the Security Service of Ukraine, and Defence Intelligence for their new Ukrainian long-range capability.

“What our own drones are capable of is a true Ukrainian long-range capability. Ukraine will now always have a strike force in the sky,” he added.

Alisha Rahaman Sarkar17 March 2024 07:30


Putin’s party hit by cyberattack as armed Russian troops oversee voters in occupied Ukraine

United Russia, for which Vladimir Putin acts as its de facto ruler but is not representing in these elections, claimed it faced a widespread denial of service attack – a form of cyberattack aimed at paralysing web traffic – and had suspended non-essential services to repel it.

State news agency RIA quoted a senior telecoms official as blaming the cyberattacks on Ukraine and Western countries. They did not provide evidence to substantiate this claim.

Tom Watling17 March 2024 07:00


Noon Against Putin: Alexei Navalny’s final plan to disrupt Russia’s sham elections

Russian citizens will spend this weekend casting their vote for their next president, even though the result has already been decided.

No amount of votes against him can prevent his victory, say the Russian dissident community, since the system is rigged and those that could challenge him have either been killed, imprisoned or exiled.

Tom Watling17 March 2024 06:30

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