An opposition activist suspected of throwing rocks at police at the May 6 rally on Bolotnaya Ploshchad and reportedly mentioned in radical leftist Leonid Razvozzhayev’s “confession” of plotting to incite riots is seeking political asylum in Ukraine.
Filipp Galtsov, a member of the Russian Socialist Movement who purportedly, according to Razvozzhayev’s confession, “leads a colony of anarchists,” fled Russia late last month for fear of being arrested for allegedly organizing riots at the March of Millions rally.
Razvozzhayev, who is in a Siberian jail awaiting transfer to Moscow for further questioning, was detained in October after seeking asylum in Kiev. He disappeared shortly after applying at a United Nations refugee agency and turned up in a Moscow jail a few days later with a harrowing tale of abduction and forced confession.
Galtsov fled to Ukraine after getting several visits from security forces throughout November and December. His apartment was also searched after he voluntarily came forward as a witness for the defense of another figure in the Bolotnaya riot case, Agora human rights group spokesman Dmitry Kolbasin said in comments carried by Interfax on Thursday.
In an interview with the Ukrainian migration service, Galtsov was reportedly asked about his relationship with arrested Left Front members Konstantin Lebedev, Sergei Udaltsov and Razvozzhayev, and whether he threw rocks at police officers at the rally.
After handing in his application for asylum on Feb. 6, Galtsov said he was followed from the building to his place of stay in Ukraine. That same day, Kolbasin said, Galtsov’s grandmother was called to the Investigative Committee in Moscow for questioning.
Seventeen people have been accused of involvement in violence at the rally; 12 have been arrested. A criminal case was opened on charges of inciting mass disorder and using violence against police.