Get the latest updates as we post them — right on your browser

. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Union Rallies on May 1

The Moscow Federation of Trade Unions said Thursday that they had received President Yeltsin's approval to rally on Red Square on May 1, despite the president's ban on demonstrations there.

The president's press office, however, could not confirm that the group had received the permission to hold a rare demonstration on the capital's most famous square.

On Wednesday, Yeltsin banned demonstrations on Red Square, as well on the Staraya and Novaya Squares in the center.

At a press conference Thursday, Gennady Zyuganov, a leader of the Russian Communist Party, said that his party planned to march from Oktyabrskaya Square to Red Square in violation of Yeltsin's ban.

A spokeswoman for Mayor Yury Luzhkov said that his office had issued permission only for two demonstrations elsewhere in the city, one communist and one rightist nationalist.

During Soviet times. Red Square was the center of the country's May Day celebration, and was presided over by the country's top political leaders.

By last year, the square attracted a ragged band of Communist diehards, as well as street musicians and performers.