Europe calls on Russia to release Navalny
The appeal was supported by congressmen from both parties
Members of the Subcommittee on Europe, Eurasia, Energy and Environment of the Committee on Foreign Relations of the US House of Representatives sent an appeal to Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov calling for the immediate release of Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny.
The appeal, in particular, states that Alexei Navalny was detained on the basis of "dubious charges at shameful court hearings." Congressmen also called for the release of "all journalists and citizens arrested in revenge for his return home, including those who tried to greet him at the airport.".
“We are deeply concerned about the latest events, the systematic actions (…) of the Russian Federation to suppress freedom of speech, civil society, independent voices and prospects in Russia. – said in the appeal. – The United States Congress supports the Russian people (…) who want their government to serve their interests, without corruption and persecution. We will continue to explore the possibility of applying all diplomatic and punitive measures in response to these egregious actions against Mr. Navalny and his supporters ".
The authors of the appeal warn: “If Mr. Navalny or any of the journalists and citizens detained in connection with his imprisonment become victims of physical violence, we will immediately start working with President Biden and his administration to ensure that the Russian Federation is held accountable for such a gross and politically motivated violation of human rights ".
Protests in Russia
OVD-Info reports a record number of detainees. According to the latest data, 2,300 people were detained at protests across the country, which broke the record for the action on June 12, 2017, when 1,769 protesters were detained..
On Saturday evening Moscow time, detentions continued in the capital and a number of other Russian cities. In particular, the police continued to detain protesters outside the Matrosskaya Tishina pre-trial detention center, where Alexei Navalny is.
The largest number of detainees was in Moscow – about 900 people. According to Reuters, at least 40,000 people took to the streets of the Russian capital. Also, large-scale detentions took place in St. Petersburg (309 detainees), Novosibirsk (95), Voronezh (50), Sochi (46), Stavropol (42), Omsk (39) and other cities.