MOSCOW, May 1 (RIA Novosti) - About 400,000 Russians
on Friday celebrated Spring and Labor Day, with trade unions
and political parties holding rallies across the country.
"As of 15:00 Moscow time [11:00 GMT], 491 demonstrations,
rallies and assemblies took place in Russia, with about 400,000
people participating," police said, adding that 32,000 police
and Interior Ministry troops worked to ensure public order
during the events across Russia.
May 1 is Spring and Labor Day across Russia, a national
holiday. In Soviet times May 1 saw massive Communist Party
Moscow police reported earlier in the day that as around
25,000 people were taking part in events in downtown Moscow to
mark the day, including demonstrations by the ruling United
Russia party, the Communists and trade unions, the
ultranationalist LDPR Party and the liberal Yabloko party.
No public order problems were reported in Moscow, but
police have detained 120 nationalists, anti-fascists and
anarchists following demonstrations in St. Petersburg. Police
seized a number of knives and rubber-bullets pistols.