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Udaltsov Walks Free After More Than 4 Years of Jail for Anti-Kremlin Protests

Sergei Udaltsov on the march to mark 92th anniversary of Great October Revolution in Moscow, November 7, 2009 Yuri Timofeyev / Flickr

A left-wing activist convicted for organizing mass anti-Kremlin protests in 2012 was released on Tuesday after serving out his term.

Left Front leader Sergei Udaltsov, who was accused of plotting mass riots across Russia, spent 4.5 years in a penal colony in the Tambov region in central Russia after being denied parole in March 2016.

In a Facebook post announcing the news of Udaltsov’s release, his wife Anastasia described him as “full of optimism and positive emotions." 

He plans to hold a news conference on Wednesday in Moscow.

Udaltsov was convicted alongside Leonid Razvozzhayev in July 2014 for organizing mass protests on the eve of Vladimir Putin’s inauguration. The May 6, 2012, protest resulted in violent clashes between protesters and riot police and dozens were later charged in a string of cases known as the Bolotnaya case.

Human rights activists have denounced the cases as politically motivated.

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