|Cossacks ready clamp down on demonstrators in St. Petersburg (1905).|
The invisible hand of Russian dictator Vladimir Putin reaches every corner of his vast empire. It is therefore no surprise that the humble servants in his home town St. Petersburg have decided to honor their great son by banning public gatherings:
The local assembly of Russia's second-largest city, St. Petersburg, has banned public gatherings in the city's central squares and avenues.
The law adopted in the third reading on February 20 only allows gatherings that have official permission and are 50 meters from government buildings, schools, hospitals, or police stations.
Public gatherings can be held without advance permission by a maximum of 200 people in specially designated areas.-
The leader of the opposition Yabloko party, Grigory Yavlinsky, called the law unconstitutional, adding that his party will fight to repeal it.