On Monday 22/22, the Russian Foreign Ministry expressed its disappointment with the European Union’s decision to impose sanctions on four senior Russian officials over the repression of the Kremlin’s most prominent opponent, Alexei Navalny and his supporters.
On Monday, European Union foreign ministers reached an agreement to impose sanctions on four Russian officials over the crackdown on the opposition Navalny, after activists close to Navalny demanded the bloc to impose sanctions on the wealthy and influential close to power. The diplomats did not give any details about the names of the officials who will be targeted with the freezing of their assets and the travel ban.
The Russian Foreign Ministry considered in a statement that “the decision issued by the European Union’s Foreign Ministers Council on February 22 of this year under a flimsy pretext in order to prepare for the imposition of new unilateral and illegal restrictions against Russian citizens disappointing,” and continued that “Brussels is once again instinctively pressing on Broken penalties button. ” Alexei Navalny was arrested upon his return to Moscow in January from Germany, where he was recovering from an attempt to poison the Vladimir Putin regime was accused of being responsible. Moscow has repeatedly denied the accusations. Since then, Navalny has received several court convictions.
Navalny prison sparked nationwide protests that saw thousands of protesters arrested and calls in the West for the release of Putin’s most prominent opponent. On Saturday, a Moscow court upheld a verdict in which Navalny was imprisoned for more than two years for violating a suspended sentence issued in 2014 on charges of fraud, despite a European human rights court’s demand for Russia to release him, considering the verdict “arbitrary.”
The Russian Foreign Ministry said, “We consider the continuing illegal and absurd demands to + release + a citizen of the Russian Federation condemned by a Russian court for committing economic crimes on the territory of our country in accordance with Russian law is totally unacceptable.” “In international practice, this is called interference in the internal affairs of a sovereign state,” she added. In October, the federation blacklisted six officials for poisoning Navalny with Novichok nerve agent, a nerve gas of the Soviet era, in August. The bloc has previously imposed various sanctions on Moscow due to the annexation of Crimea in 2014 and Russia’s role in the ongoing and raging conflict in eastern Ukraine.
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