Eastern Europe News

Kremlin Foe Alexei Navalny Jailed For 20 More Days After Finishing 30 Day Term

Image by Bogomolov.PL
Alexey Navalny with wife Yulia

Staunch anti-Kremlin activist Alexei Navalny was arrested yesterday leaving a prison facility after serving 30 days, and sentenced to another 20 days in jail. Analysts are saying the action was taken to prevent the anti-corruption crusader from attending rallies over the next few weeks as Moscow looks to pass unpopular pension reforms.

Navalny’s supporters said he was arrested moments after walking from jail at the end of his previous stint handed down for planning an unauthorized demonstration in Moscow in January that called for a boycott of what he said would be a rigged presidential election.

He appeared again in court on Monday evening where he was found guilty of organizing an illegal protest on Sept. 9, his supporters said.

Navalny, 42, denied to the court any involvement in the illegal protest on Sept. 9 because he had been in jail at the time when Moscow authorities turned down an opposition request for the rally. “I had no means of communication, no Internet… I was completely isolated,” he said, reported The Moscow Times.

Pension reform has become the ‘third rail’ of Russian politics. Russian President Vladimir Putin has had his popularity rating damaged by the process. Russians see the measure as a corrupt way for the government to steal from the people. Although the legislation raises the retirement age to levels seen in developed countries, life expectancy in the Russian Federation is much lower.

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