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Irony alert: U.S. calls on Russia to respect peaceful protests

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The United States called Friday on both Russian authorities and protesters to remain peaceful as opponents of Prime Minister Vladimir Putin prepared major weekend demonstrations against his rule.

Putin has angrily accused the United States of inciting the protests after Secretary of State Hillary Clinton raised concerns about the fairness of parliamentary elections that Putin’s party won but with a reduced majority.

The State Department earlier denied Putin’s allegations that the United States has funded Russians so that they would challenge him, saying that Washington supports groups that work for democratic governance in general.


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