Moscow Police Detain Kids Who Tried Laying Flowers at Ukraine Embassy

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  • Five children were detained in Moscow while laying flowers at the Ukrainian embassy, ​​a local professor said.
  • Photos and a video posted by the professor show the kids behind bars and one girl weeping.
  • The anthropologist later wrote that the children were released but could face a court trial.

Moscow police on Tuesday detained five children – aged between seven and 11 – and two mothers who tried to lay flowers at the Ukrainian embassy, ​​according to a Russian professor.

Photos posted on Facebook by anthropologist Alexandra Arkhipova appear to show some of the children sitting in a police van and later being held behind bars. It is unclear how Arkhipova is related to the detained parties.

In one of the photos posted, a young girl is seen sitting next to a uniformed officer’s workstation. One of the children is also seen holding a handwritten sign that says “No to War” in Russian.

A video posted by Arkhipova also shows a young girl weeping inside a jail cell.

Arkhipova wrote that the children and their mothers – Ekaterina Zavizion and Olga Alter – were being held at the Presnensky district police station.

She alleged that police shouted at the children’s parents, took away their mobile phones, and threatened to remove their custody of the children.

“Right now, we need the help of the community, help of journalists and human rights activists,” wrote Arkhipova, who holds professorships at the Russian State University for the Humanities and the Russian School of Economics, according to the Wilson Center.

In an update to her post, Arkhipova alleged that all of the detainees had been set free, and are set to face a court trial.

Both the Russian Ministry of Internal Affairs and Arkhipova did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.

Human rights project OVD-Info tweeted a video that the organization said was taken during the arrest. A child’s screams can be heard in the footage.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba also tweeted the photos of the children, writing that Russian President Vladimir Putin “is at war with children.”

“This is how scared the man is,” Kuleba added in his tweet.

Russia’s Investigative Committee warned citizens last week not to take part in “unauthorized” protests that are “associated with the tense foreign political situation,” Insider’s Natalie Musumeci reported.

OVD-info, the human rights website, says at least 7,624 people have been detained in Russia as of Wednesday evening for “anti-war action.”

One week ago, Putin announced a military offensive against Ukraine, baselessly claiming that the operation was meant to “demilitarize and de-Nazify” the country.