Ukraine Crisis: Obama Urges Diplomatic Solution but Putin Remains Defiant
Protesters, some wearing national Ukrainian costumes, demonstrate against Russia's military intervention in Crimea in front of the Russian Embassy in Washington on 2 March 2014. Reuters

A survivor of the 1941 Nazi siege of Leningrad has been detained and fined 10,000 rubles (£165) by the Russian government for attending an anti-war rally sparked by the Crimea crisis.

Activist Igor Andreyev, 75, was detained at a protest in St. Petersburg against Russia's dispatch of troops to the Crimea.

Andreyev was accused of being a supporter of "fascism" by pro-Kremlin lawmaker and member of United Russia party Vitaly Milonov, who accosted Andreyev and tore up his protest placard, before throwing it in the bin.

Andreyev had taken the placard with the handwritten words "Peace for the World" from a woman who seemed too shy to hold up the sign.

"I was telling him that I was a child of the siege, that I know what war is like," Andreyev told the St. Petersburg Times.

"Milonov responded: 'You have been reborn, you are supporting fascism.' What does he know about fascism?

"I unfolded the placard, and immediately the Omon [riot police] ran up to me, took me by the arms and led me to the police bus".

Many readers of newspaper Novaya Gazeta offered to pay the fine imposed on Andreyev, after the newspaper published details of his arrest.

Andreyev thanked the readers for their support but declined their generous offer, saying he did not want to create the impression that he was getting money for participating in anti-war protests.

Russia deployed forces in Crimea following the Ukrainian EuroMaidan revolution which culminated in the ousting of former President Viktor Yanukovich.

Ukraine condemned the "armed invasion and occupation in violation of all international treaties and norms".

Putin deployed 80 combat helicopters, ignoring US warnings about a military drill increasing tensions.