The police were out in force on Tuesday that marked the anniversary of the Bronze Night to prevent provocations and make sure no public meetings are held. Misdemeanor proceedings were launched in two out of three incidents.
The police banned two public meetings registered for April 26, one on Tõnismäe and the other on Tatari tänav, due to risk of incitement of hatred and use of aggressive symbols. The authorities talked to the event organizer on numerous occasions and explained that holding public meetings in these places might have a provocative effect.
Urmas Tuisk, head of operations for the North Police Prefecture, described an incident where a man arrived on Tõnismäe (the former location of the Bronze Soldier Monument to soldiers who died in WWII – ed.) and threw flowers on the ground. Officers brought misdemeanor proceedings based on breach of public order and fined the man in expedited procedure. The decision has not entered into force.
At around 7 p.m., two women arrived on Tõnismäe, one wearing a ribbon with the colors of the Russian flag on it. The women said they wanted to place flowers and were told by patrol officers that loved ones can be honored at the Filtri tee cemetery. Because the women were in the territory of a banned public meeting, the officers wished to identify them. One of the women agreed to remove the ribbon from her clothing and reveal her identity, the other was taken to the station for identification and driven home after.
The man whose registered meetings the authorities had banned arrived on Tõnismäe at around 7.30 p.m. The police brought misdemeanor proceedings based on violation of the rules of holding a public meeting and detained the man.
"Remembering loved ones is not prohibited but needs to be done where appropriate and without offering provocation. These people came to Tõnismäe to demonstrate, through their behavior and actions, somewhere where it is not permitted," Urmas Tuisk explained.
The police banned public meetings that could use insignia in support of aggression last week. The ban will remain in effect until May 10.
Editor: Marcus Turovski