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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Protesters Trail Visiting VIPs

ST. PETERSBURG -- A small but determined group of anti-U.S. demonstrators followed U.S. President George W. Bush around St. Petersburg on Saturday until its leaders were shoved into a van by plainclothes security personnel and driven away.

As Bush and President Vladimir Putin were addressing students at St. Petersburg University, police kept the surrounding streets blocked to both cars and pedestrians. Suddenly, a few shouting nationalists and leftists ran past the police toward the university. Blowing their whistles, uniformed and plainclothes police ran after them as about 20 other protesters shouted obscenities.

The police dragged protesters, including several who had not attempted to cross the line, to an unmarked van, which drove away. A man who identified himself as an anti-organized crime officer said eight people had been detained.

Also Saturday, a few hundred Communists, nationalists and anti-globalization activists protested Bush's visit at rallies in the center of the city.