Russian Officials Denounce Aleksei Navalny’s Treatment in Prison

Russian opposition leader Aleksei A. Navalny, whose health deteriorated in prison, received an unusual amount of public support, as dozens of current and former city deputies as well as politicians Local legislators signed an open letter on Wednesday demanding more humane treatment and access to appropriate medical care.

Their open letter addressed to President Vladimir V. Putin is the latest in a series of public appeals from members of Russian civil society who have defied his crackdown on political dissidents. ants since the invasion of Ukraine. Last week, hundreds of Russians How many doctors? signed a petition calling on Putin to “stop mistreating” Navalny. And dozens of Russian lawyer signed a similar letter this week, the independent news agency Meduza reported.

Mr. Navalny’s health deteriorated in the harsh conditions of his captivity. At the end of December, posted on TwitterMr. Navalny said he believes Russian officials are deliberately jeopardizing his health to get him to obey their will. His wife urged prison officials to provide him with drugs.

Wednesday’s letter was signed by Russian delegates representing cities and regions across the country, who said that despite the federal government’s strong crackdown on freedom of expression, support for Support and concern for Mr. Navalny remains.

“It is clear to all who have followed Aleksei’s life – the purpose of his constant imprisonment in the punishment room is to create unbearable conditions for him in the penitentiary area. harm and harm his physical and mental health, as well as pose a threat. with his life,” the letter read. It added that the delegates had voters who had supported Mr Navalny’s political activities and his fight against corruption for many years.

The letter, with the full names and titles of the signatories, was addressed to Putin as well as the Russian prosecutor general and the Russian Federation Human Rights Council. It requires, among other things, that Mr. Navalny be removed from the sanctions chambers and released timely medical care or access civilian hospitals if necessary.

Such public disagreements have become especially rare in Russia since Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine and then effectively criminalize any public objection to it. Serious risk: A Russian lawmaker is convicted seven years in prison this summer to denounce the war.

Russian officials who signed the open letter acknowledge the serious risk they are taking, but argue that staying silent about Navalny’s treatment is not an option.

“Even expressing one’s opinions on the Internet carries a high risk of prosecution, administrative and criminal. So it seems to you that everything is fine – no one objected, everyone was silent,” they said. “We are not silent.”


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