Here’s what you need to know about Russia Navalny protests: Kremlin hits out at West as it downplays rallies
Tens of thousands defied a heavy police presence to join the rallies on Saturday. More than 3,500 were detained, monitors say.
On Monday, President Vladimir Putin said the protests were “illegal and dangerous”.
European Union foreign ministers meet on Monday to discuss their response, with calls for increased sanctions.
The foreign ministers of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania are demanding “restrictive measures against Russian officials responsible for arrests”.
Mr Navalny, President Putin’s most high-profile critic, called for protests after he was arrested on his return to Russia a week ago.
Demonstrations were held on Saturday in about 100 cities and towns from Russia’s Far East and Siberia to Moscow and St Petersburg.
In Moscow, riot police were seen beating and dragging away demonstrators.
Observers say the scale of the demonstrations across the country was unprecedented, while the protest in the capital was the largest in almost a decade.
They appeared to enjoy widespread passive support, with trolley bus passengers waving to the crowds and large numbers of car drivers beeping their horns.