I'm well aware that Russian authorities have cracked down on spontaneous/illegal anti war demonstrations. Whereas for the pro-military-intervention ones, e.g. using the "Z" sign...

Have any Russian authorities granted any permits such anti-war/anti-military-intervention demonstrations to be held legally? If, so what kind of banners were allowed at such legally held anti-war demonstrations? I'm talking about the war in Ukraine, so was e.g. "stop the special military operation" a banner that was seen at a legally held protest in Russia, for instance?

  • 3
    There is a Wikipedia article 2022 anti-war protests in Russia, but I can't see anything about legal protests in it.
    – Stuart F
    Jul 22, 2022 at 10:32
  • 1
    Russian Federation also does not allow pro-army demonstrations unless they come directly from Kremlin, such as the one in Luzhniki.
    – alamar
    Jul 22, 2022 at 17:45

4 Answers 4


Alexei Gorinov was permitted to display his poster "Do you still need this war" during his trial, where he has been sentenced to seven years in prison after criticising Ukraine war.

It is a single man only demonstration but I assume the law court is a legal and official environment and the state was in control to prevent him doing so easily. He was also accessible to mass media reporters to make pictures as seen in the referenced article. Image credit ovd.news Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported.

enter image description here

This behavior increased the duration of the sentence handed very significantly.

  • 2
    "the state was in control to prevent him doing so easily" — see the penultimate photo in this article to see how hard they tried :)
    – Ruslan
    Jul 22, 2022 at 18:27
  • 5
    "This behavior increased the duration of the sentence handed very significantly." - sounds like it was de-facto not legal. Jul 22, 2022 at 18:53
  • 4
    @user253751 It's fully legal to say many things in court unless you are placing it in contempt, but not admitting the crime and being proud of committing it usually leads to longer sentence since there are no reasons to plead for a shorter one.
    – alamar
    Jul 22, 2022 at 18:56
  • 3
    @alamar If you say it is admitting to the same crime that by default makes it illegal and not an example of it being legal.
    – Joe W
    Sep 3, 2022 at 16:48

I am not aware of any permits for anti-war/anti-military-intervention demonstrations to be held legally in Russia. I have been monitoring Russian and Ukrainian social media since December 2021, when the preparations for the invasion started escalating rapidly. As you mentioned, illegal actions have been taking place, often limited to single people. In most cases, the participants have been prosecuted by the government.


Protests against the Russian invasion of Ukraine started February 24, 2022. They take place as demonstrations, one-person pickets and other social actions in Russia as well as in other countries. In Russia, anti-war protests are banned and are suppressed by the police; many of the participants are prosecuted for criminal and civil crimes. According to the human rights organization OVD-Info (ОВД-Инфо), altogether from February 24 until May 9 in russia 15441 people have been detained for participation in anti-war protests. - Protests against the Russian invasion of Ukraine - Wikipedia (in Russian)

Below are a few recent tweets from from the Twitter account of the human rights organization OVD-Info (ОВД-Инфо):

[Municipal representative] Elena Kotyonochkina during the session of the council of representatives called Russia "a fascist state" and, following the reports filed by informants, left the country. Elena is a colleague of Ilya Yashin and Alexey Gorinov. A criminal proceeding about "fake [information dissemination]" was filed against all three of them." - OVD-Info, July 22, 2022

In Moscow police detained Anna Mikhaylova, who participated a one-person picket with the poster "No war", as well as Vladislav Gur'yanov, who made photos of the woman.

No war

OVD-Info, July 22, 2022

An activist from Ivanovo was detained for a single person picket - he held the poster with "*** *****" written on it. The detained man was charged with a new law about "discrediting Russian military".

(Note that the words on the poster could be interpreted as "net vojne" ("no war" in Russian))

*** *****

Maxim Drukovsky. TJournal, March 12, 2022


The New York Times thinks that the funeral of M. Gorbachev is.

For many, the funeral was a vivid reminder of the rights that Russians have lost under the leadership of President Vladimir V. Putin and as a result of the almost complete dismantling of Mr. Gorbachev’s legacy, culminating with the six-month-old war that Russia is prosecuting in Ukraine to take back former Soviet territory.

The funeral was a rare opportunity for like-minded Russians to gather in one place at a time when such protests are otherwise criminalized. It matters that V. Putin has not attended.

  • 5
    It's not immediately visible as anti-war demonstration. No banners or anything I guess. But then it's probably the reason it could exist. Sep 4, 2022 at 6:10
  • 1
    The Gorbachev legacy is literally "slow motion passenger train wreck". Binding it to the anti-war movement assumes replacing the war with worse things. Of course there's a certain demographic OK with it, but is it really big?
    – alamar
    Mar 19, 2023 at 23:31
  • As much as the west likes to glorify Gorbachev, his legacy is seen very negatively in Russia.
    – sfxedit
    Mar 20, 2023 at 21:49

Many Western publications interpret long queues to sign for Boris Nadezhdin, a presidential candidate who has said in his manifesto that Putin made a “fatal mistake by starting the special military operation”, and called to end it in his election program, like The Guardian, for instance:

Standing in line and supporting Nadezhdin is a safe way to protest

The number of collected signatures seems to pass the required number of 100,000. Nadezhdin’s campaign said they had collected more than 200,000 signatures – twice as many as he needs to officially join the race.

Navalny also proposed the election day protests in Russia by voting at a specific hour.

  • Peoole showing up at voting booths is likely what Nagezhdin affair makers had in mind.
    – alamar
    Feb 3 at 14:14

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .