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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Nashi Won't Take Tea With Brenton

MTNashi demonstrators Tuesday protesting Ambassador Brenton's attendance at The Other Russia conference in July.
Activists from the pro-Kremlin youth group Nashi on Tuesday descended on the British Embassy demanding an apology from Ambassador Anthony Brenton for attending "a conference of fascists," as Nashi put it, in July.

Brenton did not come out of the embassy, near the Smolenskaya metro station. Nor did he offer an apology for attending The Other Russia conference in Moscow, held just days before the G8 summit in St. Petersburg.

Organizers behind The Other Russia included chess champion turned liberal reformer Garry Kasparov; Viktor Anpilov, head of the Working Russia party; and Eduard Limonov, head of the National Bolshevik Party. Former Prime Minister Mikhail Kasyanov and presidential also-ran Irina Khakamada also attended.

After months of demanding talks with Brenton, Nashi was invited to show up at the embassy for a "cup of tea" with the ambassador Tuesday at 2 p.m.

Apparently, that was not what Nashi wanted. "We don't need tea, we need apologies," read one of the group's banners.

"We know what he will say," said Nashi's federal commissar, Vasily Yakimenko. "He will talk down to us and say, 'Your democracy is young.'"

British Embassy spokesman Anjoum Noorani said Brenton had attended The Other Russia to display support for civil society in Russia.

No more than 30 Nashi supporters could be spotted outside the embassy. The group issued a statement Tuesday claiming more than 50 of their members were there.