Russian opposition appeals to the G-8 leader, asking to influence on Putin

Participants in the "Other Russia" meeting said numerous activists had been forcibly prevented from attending the conference, as well as beaten, detained and otherwise abused.

The statement asked the leaders to demand the immediate release of all the detainees and to end all unlawful actions against the opposition.

The two-day conference, which was scheduled to end Wednesday, was a rare opportunity for Russia's embattled opposition groups to unite but it again demonstrated the deep divisions among liberal forces. The country's two most prominent liberal parties, the Union of Right Forces and Yabloko, did not attend in protest against the inclusion of ultranationalist and extremist groups that they said would undercut the democratic character of the meeting, the AP reports.