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Thousands March in Support of Bolotnaya Defendants

Thousands of demonstrators marched through downtown Moscow on Sunday in support of the defendants in the so-called "Bolotnaya Case" against those who are being prosecuted for participation in "mass riots" for a May 2012 protest.

Police estimated that 2,000 people attended the opposition march, RBC reported. However, the opposition says that the crowd was between 12,000 to 15,000, the maximum allowed by organizers' application for the event, Lenta.ru reported.

The application to City Hall originally asked to conduct a march along Tverskaya Ulitsa street to Manezh Square in the heart of Moscow, though authorities later agreed only to a march along the Boulevard Ring between Pushkin Square and Turgenev Square.

The event reportedly took place without incident. Demonstrators were also asked to donate money to the defense of the Bolotnaya defendants, who were charged after participation in a 2012 rally on the eve of Putin's inauguration that ended in violent clashes between police and protesters on Moscow's Bolotnaya Ploshchad. Eight defendants are still on trial, while two have already been found guilty, eight have been amnestied and one was sent to a psychiatric hospital.

Sunday's demonstrators included a smattering of different opposition groups, including nationalists, LGBT activists, leftists, those carrying Ukrainian flags in presumed solidarity with Kiev protesters and those in support of the independent television channel Dozhd.

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