The Russian opposition politician Aleksey Navalny was removed from the detention centre where he was taken at the end of February. It‘s unclear where he is now, Navalny’s lawyers report on Twitter.
The Russian state agency Tass reports, based on a government source, that the Kremlincriticus is being held in a penal colony in Pokrov, some 100 kilometres east of Moscow. That‘s where he should serve his 2.5 years in prison.
On 3 March, Navalny announced that he was being held in a custody centre in Kolchugino, 50 kilometres south of Pokrov. According to Tass, he was quarantined there and subjected to medical tests.
His lawyers reported this morning that after a long wait at the detention center in Kolchugino, they were told that their client is no longer there. The prison authorities didn’t want to say anything else about that.
In Russia, communications are never made about where prisoners are being taken until they are actually there, says correspondent Iris de Count from Moscow. “Last time Navalny was missing for two days and the hashtag #GdeNavalny, or ‘WharisNavalny’ became trending. Also family and friends didn‘t know where he was. We’re seeing that hashtag now.”
In mid-February, President Putin‘s chief critic was condemned for not having regularly reported to the authorities following a previous conviction. He was also punished for insulting a war veteran.
The lawsuits shortly followed Navalny’s return from Germany, where he recovered from a poison attack. The critic is convinced that the Kremlin was behind the poisoning.