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Dozens of Muslims Detained After Friday Prayers Near Moscow, Reports Say

Dmitry Rogulin / TASS

Up to 100 Muslims were detained for several hours after Friday prayers outside Moscow, activists told media.

The worshippers encountered dozens of masked men in uniforms as they filed out of a mosque in the town of Mytishchi north of Moscow, the Mediazona news website cited an eyewitness and two journalists as saying Saturday.

Eyewitness Magomed Khabibirov was cited as saying that a plainclothes officer had told the detained worshippers that units were called in response to complaints over a mass gathering. They ordered the worshippers to board two buses, where Khabibirov said they were held for several hours.

“They haven’t filed any report or anything. We just sat there for five hours and were released in the end,” he was quoted as saying. “They’ve told us absolutely nothing.”

Residents near the Mytishchi mosque could not have complained about the mass gathering because they know that Friday prayers occur there every week, the outlet cited Khabibirov as saying.

“We were loaded into buses and unloaded like potato sacks,” he added.

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