Russian opposition leader confirms prison move

Opposition politician Alexei Navalny confirmed on Wednesday that he had been moved to another prison and quarantined.

Navalny wrote on the Telegram messaging app that he had been transferred to the maximum security IK-6 prison in the village of Melekhovo, in the Vladimir region, about 250 kilometers (155 miles) east of Moscow .

Navalny, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s most determined political enemy, was previously held at the IK-2 penal colony in the Vladimir region. The Pokrov City Institution stands out among Russian penitentiaries for its particularly strict detention routines, which include standing at attention for hours on end. IK-6 is located about 150 kilometers to the east.

“My space journey continues,” Navalny wrote on Wednesday. “I went from ship to ship.”

He said he was confined to a “strict diet” and in quarantine, but did not say why or what his conditions were.

Navalny was arrested in January 2021 upon returning from Germany, where he was recovering from nerve agent poisoning he blamed on the Kremlin. He received a 2.5-year sentence for allegedly violating his parole conditions while outside Russia.

In March, Navalny was sentenced to nine years in prison for fraud and contempt of court, allegations he dismissed as a politically motivated attempt by Russian authorities to keep him behind bars as long as possible.

The new sentencing was part of a Kremlin crackdown on Navalny supporters, other opposition activists and independent journalists who appeared to be aimed at stifling dissent.

Navalny’s close aides have faced criminal charges and many have left Russia. Russian authorities shut down his group’s political infrastructure – an anti-corruption foundation and nationwide network of offices – labeling it an extremist organization.

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