In April 1914 political demonstrations took place throughout Russia. A protest strike was held in St Petersburg in response to the alleged food ‘poisoning’ of female factory workers. Sympathy strikes occurred in other cities, and Malinovsky, still in office, indulged in a good deal of oratory on ‘poisoning’. The Petersburg Bolsheviks called for a general strike similar to that of 1905, but were unsuccessful. On May 14th, 250,000 workers were striking in Petersburg, but only there and in Tiflis was the participation significantly large. A protracted strike in the Baku oil industry began on June 10th, purportedly because of a plague epidemic among the workers.