Alexei Navalny was arrested by Russian police as he landed in Moscow (Photo: Reuters)
Kremlin critic and opposition leader Alexei Navalny was arrested by Russian police in the evening after landing in Moscow.
Oh, dear Lord. Navalny returned to Moscow despite warnings from Russian authorities that he would be arrested in connection with the 2014 embezzlement case, which he said was fictitious and politically motivated.
Now he imagines kissing his wife before the cops take her away. Since then, his wife has been allowed to enter Russia.
The anti-corruption activist spent five months in Berlin in a medical emergency after being poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok.
He believes the Kremlin is behind the poison attack, but Vladimir Putin’s government has denied these allegations.
Navalny said he would return to Russia on Wednesday, and the next day the Federal Prison Service announced that he was awaiting arrest.
He told reporters who bought plane tickets around him: This is the best time in the last five months. I feel good. I’m finally going back to my hometown.
He went on to say: What do I have to be afraid of? What bad things could happen to me in Russia? I feel like a Russian citizen who has the right to return.
Mr Navalny gave his wife Yulia a goodbye kiss before they took her away (Photo: Reuters)
Passengers and journalists aboard the plane take pictures of the opposition leader’s abduction (Photo: Getty Images)
Mr Navalny criticised Vladimir Putin (Photo: Getty Images)
Navalny, his wife Yulia and spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh had to land at Vnukovo airport, where supporters and allies were waiting to welcome him home.
But Russian authorities arrested four of his supporters in Vnukovo on Sunday and diverted his flight at the last minute to Sheremetyevo airport.
Authorities accuse him of violating the terms of his probation after he was convicted of embezzlement. He has always said the case was politically motivated.
The service said he violated the terms of his sentence by failing to report for registration six times last year, as he was required to do twice a month.
Russian activist Alexei Navalny, who survived an assassination attempt, was arrested today after bravely returning to Russia. I demand his release.
The United States must stand with those who are fighting corruption and working for democracy around the world. https://t.co/eCMB4QeERL
– Bernie Sanders (@SenSanders) January 17, 2021
They said Navalny would be remanded in custody until his court hearing later this month. He will then learn whether the authorities have decided to commute his suspended sentence to three and a half years in prison.
Ms Yarmish confirmed her arrest on Twitter, saying Alexei had been arrested by police at the border. No explanation.
Bernie Sanders, on the other hand, has called for his release: Russian activist Alexei Navalny, who survived an assassination attempt, was arrested today after bravely returning to Russia.
I demand his release. The United States must stand with those who are fighting corruption and working for democracy around the world.
Despite three other criminal cases, Mr Navalny is trying to make a success of the upcoming parliamentary elections in September.
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