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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

1,500 Protest Food Prices

ST. PETERSBURG -- Around 1,500 people, half of them pensioners, marched through St. Petersburg on Saturday chanting anti-Kremlin slogans and banging saucepans in protest against rising food prices.

Three activists were detained during the largely peaceful "march of the empty saucepans" in St. Petersburg, organized by opponents of President Vladimir Putin, who blame his leadership for a sharp rise in inflation this year.

"I receive a pension of 3,000 rubles [$120 per month]," said one demonstrator, who declined to give her name. "They have given me another 300 rubles. On this money, I can eat 250 grams of bread a day. That's why I'm against Putin and United Russia."

Consumer prices are expected to post a double-digit increase this year.

Several hundred policemen lined the route of the march, which attracted activists from the banned National Bolshevik Party and Garry Kasparov's United Civil Front.

Protesters shouted slogans such as "Putin's plan is trouble for Russia" and "We're awaiting a bread uprising." Police intervened to prevent activists from hanging an effigy of Putin.

Milk powder prices have doubled this year, and bread prices have rocketed in line with world grain prices.