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February 28, 2020

Russian opposition leader Navalny sentenced to 10 days in jail: spokeswoman - Tip News

Russian opposition leader Navalny sentenced to 10 days in jail: spokeswoman

Russian opposition leader Navalny sentenced to 10 days in jail: spokeswoman
'Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny's anti-corruption rhetoric is hugely popular among younger people who follow his online channels and blogs' - By: AFP/File Vasily MAXIMOV

A Moscow court on Monday sentenced Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny to 10 days in prison for taking part in a protest in support of a journalist last month.

"Navalny got 10 days," his spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh wrote on Twitter. Prosecutors accuse Navalny of breaking Russia's strict protest laws during the June 12 rally.

Navalny was one of more than 400 people detained when police sought to break up the peaceful protest that called for an end of the alleged impunity of law enforcement agencies. He was released several hours later.

The protest was held on a public holiday after police suddenly dropped trumped-up charges against respected journalist Ivan Golunov.

It was initially called to press for the freedom of Golunov who was released on the eve of the march following several days of public outrage.

Many saw Golunov's release as a Kremlin attempt to crush the new protest wave.

Police were seen beating protesters and detaining some passers-by at the rally, and Amnesty International accused authorities of "contempt for solidarity and rights."

Over the last decade, Navalny has emerged as one of the key opponents of President Vladimir Putin, organising some of the biggest anti-Kremlin protests in recent years.

Last year, Navalny served two stints of 30 and 20 days in jail for violating protest laws.

As soon as he was released from jail after serving the 30-day sentence last September, he was detained again.

In April, Europe's top rights court ruled that Russia had violated Navalny's human rights by holding him under house arrest for a lengthy spell in 2014.

He was barred from taking on Putin at the ballot box during Russia's presidential election last year, in what supporters argue is a brazen attempt by the Kremlin to keep a dangerous opponent from the stage.

His anti-corruption rhetoric is hugely popular among younger people who follow his online channels and blogs.

The Yale-educated lawyer has faced a string of criminal charges since he became the leading opposition figure in Russia, campaigning against Putin's rule at mass demonstrations in 2011 and 2012.

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