Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Kremlin critic in jail, 1,400 detained



Kremlin critic in jail, 1,400 detained

Content image - Phnom Penh Post
Alexei Navalny. HANDOUT / MOSCOW CITY COURT PRESS SERVICE / AFP

Kremlin critic in jail, 1,400 detained

More than 1,400 protesters were detained by Russian authorities during rallies supporting Alexei Navalny, a civil monitoring group said on February 3, after the Kremlin’s most prominent critic was jailed for nearly three years amid international condemnation.

Judge Natalya Repnikova on February 2 ordered a 2014 suspended three-and-a-half-year sentence that the 44-year-old anti-corruption campaigner – who accuses Moscow of poisoning him last year – received on fraud charges to be changed to time in a penal colony, an AFP journalist at the courthouse said.

Navalny was accused of violating parole conditions by refusing to check in with prison officials and was arrested when he flew back to Moscow on January 17 from Germany, where he spent months recovering from a poisoning.

He said it was impossible to make the appointments while abroad, but the judge said he had skipped meetings prior to the poisoning.

Navalny had spent time under house arrest after the 2014 conviction – which was denounced by the European Court of Human Rights – and Repnikova said that would count as time served.

His lawyer Olga Mikhailova said he would now serve around two years and eight months in prison.

His legal team plan to appeal, she added, with Navalny expected to stay in detention in Moscow during that process.

Britain, France, Germany, the US and the EU denounced the ruling and called for his immediate release, as Moscow accused the West of interfering in its affairs.

By early on February 3, 1,408 people had been detained across Russian cities – mostly in Moscow and St Petersburg – the civil monitoring group OVD-Info said. Many were detained before Navalny’s sentence.

Navalny’s supporters had earlier called for more demonstrations against the decision after thousands joined nationwide protests against his arrest over the last two weekends.

MOST VIEWED

  • WHO: Covid in Cambodia goes into new phase

    The World Health Organisation (WHO) in Cambodia said that Cambodia has reached a new phase of the pandemic with “decreasing case numbers, high vaccination coverage and a more transmissible circulating variant threatening a hidden surge”. In a press release on September 6, the WHO said that

  • 'Pursue your goals, reach out to me': Young diplomat tapped as envoy to South Korea

    Chring Botum Rangsay was a secretary of state at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation before being designated as the new Cambodian ambassador to South Korea. According to her official CV published on the foreign ministry’s website, she started her first government

  • International air visitor arrivals dip 93%

    The number of foreign tourists entering Cambodia through the Kingdom’s three international airports witnessed a sharp 92.5 per cent year-on-year decline in the first seven months of this year, according to the Ministry of Tourism. The airports handled 51,729 international tourists in the January-July period versus

  • School reopening ‘offers model for other sectors’

    World Health Organisation (WHO) representative to Cambodia Li Ailan said school reopening process should be used as a role model for reopening other sectors currently mothballed by the Covid-19 pandemic. Li strongly supports the government’s decision to reopen schools, saying it is a decision

  • Covid jab drive for 6-11 age group to begin Sept 17

    Prime Minister Hun Sen has permitted Covid-19 vaccinations for over 1.8 million children aged 6-11 across the country from September 17 in order for them to return to school after a long hiatus. Hun Sen also hinted that vaccinations for the 3-6 age group will follow in

  • Is Cambodia’s microfinance sector running its course?

    Economic growth and the strength of the banking system might have prompted a slow decline of the microfinance segment that has been raising a population ‘The MFI business model is over,” opined David Van, a Cambodian investment expert, recently. He felt that in a couple