Police interrupted a rally in Narva on Saturday in support of the return of Soviet monuments because the event featured military symbols and violated the requirements for organizing a public assembly.
A misdemeanor case has been opened against the rally’s organizer and two participants, the Police and Border Guard Department said.
According to Urmas Elmi, operative head of the Ida Prefecture, the police registered the rally, but increased attention was paid to the event to prevent possible provocations. “Our goal was to ensure public order at the rally and to make sure that the event was peaceful and without disturbances. We interrupted the rally because the people involved were displaying military symbols and did not agree to remove them,” said Elmi.
Police took the organizer of the rally, a 52-year-old woman, to the station. A misdemeanor case was filed against her under the Penitentiary Code article, which deals with violations of the requirements for holding a public assembly. In addition, a misdemeanor case has been filed against two people wearing military insignia under an article of the penitentiary code that deals with incitement to hatred.
“We assess the risks and threats to public order for each public assembly, we talked to the organizers of the rally. We had a preliminary conversation with the host of today’s event, explained the possible dangers, and reminded them that the use of military symbols and incitement to hatred is not allowed in Estonia. We also explained that it is the responsibility of the organizer of the assembly to comply with all the requirements for organizing a public assembly.
The police pay daily attention to the use of war propaganda symbols, talk to people who use such symbols, and explain that it has a provocative effect. If the person does not agree to remove the symbol, the police react strongly and, as a rule, a misdemeanor case is initiated.