Russian Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Dies in Prison at 47

Russian Opposition Leader Alexei Navalny Dies in Prison at 47

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Latvia’s president has accused the Kremlin of “brutally murdering” Alexei Navalny, following reports from Russian authorities today announcing the death of the jailed opposition leader, who had “collapsed and died.”

Navalny’s death, as reported by Russian news outlets citing the Siberian prison service where he was serving his sentence, has triggered shock and anger worldwide, with global leaders swiftly attributing blame to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

As Putin’s most prominent adversary, Navalny fought against official corruption and organized large-scale anti-Kremlin demonstrations, drawing harsh retaliation from Moscow.

Despite surviving an assassination attempt involving the Novichok nerve agent, Navalny returned to Russia after his recovery, fully aware of the imminent arrest awaiting him.

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Since then, he had been serving a 19-year sentence on extremism charges and was transferred in December from a prison in central Russia to a “special regime” penal colony known as “Polar Wolf” above the Arctic Circle.

During a court hearing on Thursday, the 47-year-old was last seen via video link, appearing in good spirits and displaying his trademark humor. “Your Honour, I will send you my personal account number so that you can use your huge salary as a federal judge to ‘warm up’ my personal account, because I am running out of money,” he quipped, dressed in black prison uniform.

Navalny’s mother, Lyudmila, stated she had seen her son in the prison colony just on Monday, describing him as “alive, healthy, cheerful.” However, the Federal Prison Service announced today that Navalny fell ill after a walk and subsequently lost consciousness. Despite attempts by an ambulance crew to revive him, he could not be saved.

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Addressing the Munich Security Conference shortly after the news of her husband’s death emerged, Yulia Navalnaya expressed skepticism, noting that the information came from Russian government sources.

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