A group of US senators has submitted to the US Congress a bill on sanctions against Russia because of the situation with Alexei Navalny (founder of the Anti-Corruption Foundation – FBK, included by the Ministry of Justice in the register of organizations performing the functions of a foreign agent). A statement to this effect has been published on the website of Republican Mark Rubio.
The document “On Holding Russia Accountable for Malicious Activity” was reintroduced by the senators. The bill would impose targeted sanctions “against Russian officials involved in egregious violations of international law.” It refers to a number of recent events, such as the imprisonment of an opposition activist and his poisoning, attributed to Russia.
On February 2, the Moscow Simonovsky Court commuted Navalny’s suspended sentence to life imprisonment. He was accused of 60 violations of public order after his suspended sentence. Thus, the opposition leader was sentenced to 3.5 years in a penal colony, but will spend two years and eight months in custody, taking into account the year he spent under house arrest during the preliminary investigation into the Yves Rocher case.
About 20 members of foreign embassies, including those of the United States, Bulgaria, Poland, Latvia, Austria, and Switzerland, attended the hearing in Navalny’s case. Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said that the appearance of foreign diplomats in court was a political action.
An opposition activist was detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport on January 17 when he returned from Germany, where he had undergone medical treatment. This happened on the basis of a decree issued by the head of the Federal Penitentiary Service in Moscow, according to which the opposition activist was wanted for systematic violations of the terms of his probation.
Navalny fell into a coma on August 20; he became ill during a flight from Tomsk to Moscow. On August 22, he was taken to a German hospital; foreign experts came to Russia and declared that Navalny had been poisoned with a Novichok substance. Russian medics found no traces of poisons.