Conflicts & War

Two years after Navalny poisoning: attack unveiled Putin’s ‘criminal’ regime

Moscow, Aug 20 (EFE).- Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny said that his poisoning two years ago unveiled Russian President Vladimir Putin’s regime’s “criminality” and “dysfunctionality”.

“This whole situation has exposed both Putin himself and his system to such an extent that it has shown not only the criminality, but also the dysfunctionality and failure of his regime, that it has obviously had a profound effect on the entire political system of Russia,” Navalny said in a letter sent from prison and spread on social media by his supporters on Saturday.

According to the anti-corruption activist who was sentenced to 9 years in prison, by late January 2021, the Kremlin made no qualms about becoming overtly “repressive and authoritarian with no reservations at all”.

“August 20. This is the second time I celebrate my second birthday. The day they tried to kill me, but for some reason, I didn’t die.,” Navalny’s letter reads.

The politician confirmed that Russian authorities have so far not launched a criminal investigation into the attack he suffered when he was poisoned with novichok, a military-grade nerve agent developed in the Soviet Union.

He added that Russian authorities maintain that there was no poisoning with novichok and that if he was poisoned with that substance, Western secret services conducted the assault as a provocation.

On August 20, 2020, Navalny collapsed into a coma during a flight from the Siberian city of Tomsk to Moscow.

On December 14, 2020, a joint investigation by Bellingcat, Der Spiegel and CNN “discovered voluminous telecom and travel data that implicates Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB).”

“Almost all the direct participants of the group of killers have been found and identified. All of them are FSB officers.,” Navalny added.

None of the FSB agents were brought to justice, “except for Konstantin Kudryavtsev, the chemist who told me the details of the assassination attempt over the phone. He disappeared, and it looks like he was simply murdered himself,” the dissident wrote.

Navalny spoke with Kudryavtsev posing as an adviser to the Russian Security Council and posted audio of the phone conversation on social media.

The European Union’s top diplomat, Josep Borrell, on Saturday said “Two years after assassination attempt of Alexei Navalny, the EU continues to condemn this attempt and the persecution of Mr Navalny and his team members.”

“We deplore growing internal repression and systematic crackdowns on the Kremlin’s critics and civil society as a whole,” Borrell added. EFE


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