Opposition politician Alexei Navalny, who is serving time in a maximum-security colony in the Vladimir region, refused to leave his cell on Monday. He was supposed to participate remotely in a court hearing and investigative actions. According to Navalny’s ally, Ivan Zhdanov, the politician was deprived of all writing materials in his cell. As a sign of protest, he refused to leave the premises. Security officers forcibly removed him from the cell to take him to the investigator.
Navalny’s new lawyer, Leonid Solovyov, confirmed the information. He added that Navalny’s writing materials were confiscated during “regime measures,” and this wasn’t the first time such an incident had occurred. The court hearing that was supposed to take place on Monday was postponed because Navalny did not appear via video link.
On October 13, three of Navalny’s lawyers were arrested on suspicion of participating in an extremist community. According to investigators, these lawyers were facilitating the transfer of information between Navalny and the leaders of the extremist community. Another lawyer, Alexander Fedulov, reported on October 16 that he had left Russia. Earlier, lawyer Olga Mikhailova also left the country. Now, Navalny is represented by Leonid Solovyov.
Navalny is serving a 9-year sentence on fraud charges and was recently handed a new 19-year sentence for creating an extremist community. Both Navalny and human rights activists, as well as representatives of Western countries, consider his persecution to be politically motivated.