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‘Putin-Purging’ Shaman Detained, Sent to Psychiatric Hospital

Alexander Gabyshev Screenshot Youtube

A Siberian shaman who has attempted several cross-country treks to “purge” President Vladimir Putin from office has been detained and sent to a psychiatric hospital a week after attempts to place him under observation for coronavirus, the MBKh News website reported Tuesday.

“Around 20 anti-riot police stormed his house, cuffed him barefoot and bent over, and took him to a psychiatric hospital,” MBKh media quoted activist Alexei Pryanishnikov as saying.

Footage published by filmmaker Beata Bubenec, who is filming a documentary about the shaman, showed police vans and ambulances parked outside Gabyshev’s rural home. In the footage, officers wearing protective gear can be seen entering Gabyshev’s property before dismantling the camera installed on his porch.

Two of Gabyshev’s supporters were later detained for violating self-isolation rules, MBKh reported.

Gabyshev's story has made international headlines in the past year as Russian authorities have cut short each of his three attempts to trek across the country from his native republic of Sakha.

In January, Gabyshev said he planned to restart his journey to Moscow this spring to “cast out” Putin, who he describes as an “embodiment of dark forces,” from power.

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