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Navalny disappears from penal colony

Tuesday, 12 December 2023, 00:38
Navalny disappears from penal colony

Imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny has been taken out of the prison where he was serving his sentence, and his whereabouts are unknown. [Navalny is a Russian opposition politician who has made a lot of statements against the current government and the war against Ukraine, but he also supports the occupation of Crimea and other Ukrainian territories – ed.].

Source: Navalny’s spokesperson ​​Kira Yarmysh on Twitter (X); BBC

Details: Yarmysh wrote on social media that staff at the penal colony in Melehovo said he was no longer registered there.


The White House said it was "deeply concerned" by the reports.

Navalny's aides had expected him to be transferred to a higher-security prison after his sentence was extended.

They say his disappearance is linked to the recent election announcement.

On 11 December, Navalny’s associates said they had not heard from him for six days.

He has been absent from several recent court hearings, where he was previously present via video link. The colony officials explained his absence by citing technical problems at the penal colony.

At the time, Yarmysh said lawyers waiting for news near Melehovo, 235 km (145 miles) east of Moscow, and another nearby colony, had been told he was not registered there.

Navalny’s aide, Leonid Volkov, said that it was "0% coincidence and 100% direct manual political control from the Kremlin": "It's not a secret for Putin who his main opponent is in these 'elections’".


  • On 7 December, it became known that the Russian presidential election would be held on 17 March.
  • Alexei Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation has announced the launch of the Russia Without Putin campaign and has called on Russians to use the time before the election to campaign against the dictator.

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