Opposition politician Eduard Limonov said Tuesday that he will no longer file requests with the authorities to stage rallies on the final day of every month with 31 days — but he will not stop the rallies.
Filing the requests is pointless because not a single one of them has been approved over the past year, Limonov said.
The rallies on Moscow's Triumfalnaya Ploshchad are aimed at drawing attention to Article 31 of the Constitution, which grants the right of free assembly, but have always been broken up by the police, sometimes violently.
“Helping the authorities falsify legal procedures when they are actually indulging in violence and lawlessness is ... an unnecessary humiliation,” said a statement signed by Limonov and his co-organizer, Konstantin Kosyakin of the Left Front group, and published on Limonov's blog.
Moscow authorities have cited various technicalities for not authorizing the rallies.
The latest rally is scheduled to take place Saturday. Human rights champion Lyudmila Alexeyeva said earlier that the authorities had offered to sanction the event for the first time — but on condition that Limonov was excluded from the list of organizers who filed the request.
Alexeyeva, who also sits on the presidential human rights council, proposed last weekend to file two requests for the rally, one listing Limonov among the organizers and the other omitting his name, as a compromise.
But Limonov said this compromise was rejected, adding that anyone who files a request for Saturday's opposition rally would be considered “a traitor to the common cause.”
It was unclear whether Alexeyeva supported this decision.