A Russian dissident known for staging protests wearing a mask of President Vladimir Putin has claimed political asylum in Ukraine.

Roman Roslovtsev crossed from Belarus to Ukraine, and told local media that he was escaping persecution by Russian authorities.

Ukraine's border authorities said that an application for political asylum had been received, and was being reviewed by immigration authorities in Kiev. In a statement, the agency did not name Roslovtsev, but said that the applicant was a "famous Russian writer and public figure involve in active protests against Putin's existing political regime in Russia."

Ukraine's Hromadske TV identified the applicant as Roslovtsev.

Roslovtsev, 36, has been arrested several times in Moscow's Red Square staging protests in a Putin mask. He said he aims to highlight the absurdity of Russia's protest laws, which he claims are used to stifle criticism of the government. He has also protested against Russia's policy towards Ukraine.

Several critics of the Russian government have claimed asylum in Ukraine, alleging persecution by Russian security services. Ukraine has been engaged in conflict with Kremlin-backed rebels since Russia annexed Ukraine in 2014.