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Riot police detain protesters during a rally in support of jailed opposition leader Alexei Navalny in downtown Moscow on January 23, 2021.

Police clashed with pro-Navalny protesters in central Moscow, in some cases beating those who attended rallies.

Thousands of supporters of Russia's jailed opposition figure Alexei Navalny demonstrated in Moscow, answering his call for nationwide protests against President Vladimir Putin's rule.

Arrests were made in Moscow on Saturday, after thousands converged in the city centre to demand the release of the Kremlin critic.

Officers in riot gear could be seen hitting demonstrators with batons and apprehending others.

Navalny, who is President Vladimir Putin’s most prominent critic, was arrested on January 17 when he returned to Moscow from Germany.

He had spent five months in Germany recovering from a severe nerve-agent poisoning that he blames on the Kremlin.