MOSCOW - Russian riot police detained more than 500 protesters including opposition leader Alexei Navalny on Monday at rallies challenging the legitimacy of Vladimir Putin's victory in the presidential election.
Putin, who secured almost 64 percent of the votes on Sunday, portrayed his return to the presidency as a triumph over opponents who were trying to usurp power, though international monitors said the vote was clearly skewed in his favor.
But opposition leaders said they drew 20,000 people into Moscow's Pushkin Square, the scene of dissident protests during Soviet times, to call for new elections and an opening up of the political system crafted by Putin during his 12-year rule.
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