Alexei Navalny, Russian democracy activist, kissed by his wife Yulia on the opening day of the ‘Sham’ prison camp trial
Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was hugged by his wife as a new trial opened against him in a prison camp courtroom on Tuesday. The proceedings were condemned by Amnesty International as a show trial. His wife, Yulia Navalnaya, was apparently allowed to see him at least briefly after calling authorities “cowards and scoundrels” on social media on Monday when it was reported she would not be allowed to attend. She also taunted the Russian authorities at the trial location, saying, “They are afraid to hold the trial in Moscow. Everyone knows perfectly well how he will tear up the charges in court, how he will laugh at this trial. My husband is an honest man and they keep him in prison because he is not afraid of this government. Navalny, who nearly died after attempted nerve agent poisoning in 2020 but returned to Russia in 2021 despite threats of arrest, is accused of embezzling more than $4.7 million in donations in new charges that could see him jailed for up to 15 years. years. He is currently serving a two and a half year sentence in deplorable conditions. Amnesty International called the proceedings “a mock trial, attended by prison guards rather than the media”.