Navalny detained in Russia for 30 days; Kremlin critic urges supporters to ‘take to the streets’

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny takes a bus from an airplane to a terminal at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport on January 17, 2021.

KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV | AFP | Getty Images

According to his spokesman, the Russian authorities detained the opposition politician Alexei Navalny for 30 days after a hasty trial in a police station.

Kira Yarmysh said on Twitter Monday that a judge had ruled that Navalny would remain in police custody until February 15. She added that it was not yet known where he was being held during that time.

“You were detained at the border, taken in an unknown direction, the lawyer was not allowed, the trial was urgently held directly in the police department and arrested for 30 days,” Yarmysh said after hearing the verdict.

“It can’t even be called a parody of legality,” she added.

It comes after Russian authorities arrested Navalny on Sunday evening when his flight from Berlin landed at a Moscow airport. It was the first time Navalny had returned to the country since he was poisoned last summer.

His detention was ordered by the Moscow Prison Service for alleged suspended sentence violations.

“Don’t be afraid, take to the streets. Don’t go for me, go for yourself and your future,” Navalny said in a video that was posted on YouTube after the judge’s decision, according to a Reuters translation.

The United Nations, government officials and advocacy groups have rights All called on Russia to release Navalny immediately, while some countries urged possible sanctions.

In response, Moscow said Navalny’s case had received “artificial” response in the West.

“It doesn’t work outlaws”

Navalny is widely regarded as the most prominent and determined critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The 44-year-old activist has often been arrested by authorities and harassed by pro-Kremlin groups.

Navalny had recovered in Germany after surviving what has since been independently confirmed as poisoning by a Novichok nerve agent in August. 20th

Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his wife Yulia are seen at the passport control point of Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport on January 17, 2021.

KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV | AFP | Getty Images

Navalny said he believed Putin ordered the poisoning and reportedly commented last October that he saw no other explanation.

Putin’s government denies the poisoning of Navalny, though investigative reporters have since released evidence to support Navalny’s claims.

In a video Yarmysh posted Monday morning, Navalny was shown complaining about the absurdity of a provisional trial at the Khimki police station near Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport. “It is not an outlaw,” he said, according to an NBC translation.

In a joint statement by the Baltic states of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania – three former Soviet republics – the EU was called on Monday to consider “introducing restrictive measures in response to this obvious act” if Navalny is not released.

They described Navalny’s arrest as “totally unacceptable”.

Meanwhile, Natalia Zviagina, director of Amnesty International’s Moscow office, said: “The arrest of Aleksei Navalny is further evidence that the Russian authorities are trying to silence him.”

She added, “His detention only underscores the need to investigate his allegations that he was poisoned by state agents acting on orders from the highest levels.”

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