Support The Moscow Times!

Russian Youth Arrested for Inflated Duck Sparks Social Media Campaign

Vkontakte / utka2018

A yellow duck that landed a Russian opposition activist in jail this week has now taken center stage in a social media campaign to secure his release.

A St. Petersburg court reportedly sentenced Artyom Goncharenko to 25 days behind bars on Monday after he displayed a giant inflated duck outside an apartment window during an anti-election rally last month.

The “Utka 2018” social media account, which promotes itself as a tongue-in-cheek candidate in the Russian presidential elections this month, has called on its readers to join a campaign to free Goncharenko.

“Artyom is very dear to me, to his movement and our campaign team,” the duck account wrote on Russia’s Vkontakte social media website on Wednesday.

The account urged its followers to spread the message so that “they also find out the reasons for which you can lose your freedom in Russia.” 

The yellow duck has come to symbolize corruption in Russia after opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s high-profile investigation into Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev’s alleged summer home said that it contained an exclusive home for ducks.

Read more

Independent journalism isn’t dead. You can help keep it alive.

The Moscow Times’ team of journalists has been first with the big stories on the coronavirus crisis in Russia since day one. Our exclusives and on-the-ground reporting are being read and shared by many high-profile journalists.

We wouldn’t be able to produce this crucial journalism without the support of our loyal readers. Please consider making a donation to The Moscow Times to help us continue covering this historic time in the world’s largest country.