Russian police arrested at least 30 persons taking part Tuesday in an unauthorized demonstration in Moscow marking the first anniversary of the double murders of a journalist and lawyer, dpa reported.
The Interfax agency reported that the special police shoved the detainees into a bus, which then was driven away.
The Moscow rally was one of a number around the country marking the killings of the anti-Kremlin journalist Anastassiya Baburova and human rights lawyer Stanislav Markelov, who were gunned down in broad daylight on January 19, 2009.
There were also arrests made at a demonstration in
According to some estimates, the Moscow demonstration had some 300 participants while the one in St. Petersburg counted 50.
The Russian human rights group Memorial sharply criticized the arrests and charged police with using "brute force" against the demonstrators.
The police action was a "gross violation of human rights," said rights activist Oleg Orlov charged.
A police spokesman said the demonstrators had illgally unfurled banners with political slogans.
In November, police arrested two former members of a nationalist group as suspects in the murders.