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2 People Detained in Moscow Protest Against Syria Air Strikes

Police detaining an anti-war protester at the event in Moscow on Saturday.

Two people were detained Saturday during a rally in Moscow against Russian air strikes in Syria, the Dozhd opposition-leaning TV channel reported.

The demonstration in front of the Russian Army Theater in northern Moscow attracted some 100-250 protesters, according to various estimates, who held placards including one that called Syrian President Bashar Assad a murderer and also read: "Shame on Russia."

The demonstration was sanctioned by city authorities and closely monitored by police. Police officers arrested a woman carrying a placard saying President Vladimir Putin was complicit in people's deaths, as well as a man with a poster that depicted the Syrian flag and read: "Thanks Russia," who was believed to be a provocateur, Dozhd reported.

The protest was organized by the opposition movement Solidarnost (Solidarity). Sergei Davidis, one of the organizers, told the Interfax news agency there would be more demonstrations in the future.

"The next ones will be bigger. … The consequences of the intervention in Syria will worsen [with time], and [together] with the [ongoing economic] crisis it will attract more attention," Davidis was cited by Interfax as saying Saturday.

Russia says its air strikes, which began Sept. 30, are aimed at destroying facilities controlled by the Islamic State extremist group. But some Syrian groups claim the bombs are hitting civilians and rebel groups that aren't connected to Islamic State but that oppose Assad, Russia's longtime ally in the Middle East.

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.

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