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    EU blames Putin for Navalny's death


    After the death of Kremlin opponent Alexei Navalny, his widow Yulia Navalnaya accuses President Putin of murder. And she announces that she wants to continue her husband's fight for a free Russia.

    Germany and the other 26 EU states are jointly accusing Russian President Vladimir Putin of being responsible for the death of his political opponent Alexei Navalny. “The European Union is shocked by the death of Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny, for which President Putin and the Russian authorities ultimately bear responsibility,” said a statement released by EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell. The EU will spare no effort to hold Russia's political leadership and the Russian authorities accountable – including through sanctions.

    The EU also calls on the Russian authorities to facilitate an independent and transparent international investigation into the circumstances of Navalny's sudden death and to release people arrested at mourning rallies. Russia has been repeatedly called upon to ensure Navalny's safety and health.

    Regarding Navalny himself, the statement says that throughout his life he has shown incredible courage and commitment to his country and his fellow citizens in fighting corruption. That is why Putin and his regime were afraid of him, also in connection with Russia's ongoing illegal war of aggression against Ukraine and the Russian presidential elections in March. Navalny's shocking death is another sign of the accelerating and systematic repression in Russia.

    EU Commission President Ursula von der Leyen, among others, had previously expressed herself even more clearly. She assumes that Navalny was deliberately murdered.

    The EU sanctions instrument for punishing serious human rights violations should also be named after Navalny. The foreign ministers of the EU states had agreed to his proposal, said Borrell. The renaming will be a way to keep Navalny's memory alive. In the future, the sanctions regime should be called the global Navalny sanctions regime in the area of ​​human rights.

    The instrument was first used in 2021 to punish Russian state officials for imprisoning Navalny – it has now also been used against people from several other countries. Those affected must have their accounts and other assets frozen in the EU. In addition, people are no longer allowed to enter the EU or do business with EU citizens.

    Biden is considering further sanctions against Russia

    The US government is not ruling out further sanctions against Moscow following the death of Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny. “We have already imposed sanctions, but we are considering additional sanctions,” Biden said in response to a question from a reporter in Washington. A few days earlier, he had blamed Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin for the death of the opposition figure.

    With a view to passing billions in Ukraine aid in the US Congress, the Democrat said that he was not sure whether Navalny's death would make a difference and whether the Republicans would give up their blockade stance. The behavior of the Republican members of the House of Representatives is “shocking.” They would run away from the Russian threat and their obligations. Biden also said he would be open to meeting the chamber's Republican leader, Mike Johnson.

    Navalny's widow announces fight against Putin

    In an emotional declaration of war on Kremlin leader Vladimir Putin, Alexei Navalny's widow has announced that her husband's opposition work will continue. “I will continue Alexei Navalny's cause, fight for our country. I call on you to stand by my side,” said Yulia Navalnaya in a stirring video message published on YouTube.

    It remains unclear whether the 47-year-old economist wants to return to Russia for opposition work. She would also risk prison camps there because the Navalny movement is classified as extremist. She was in Brussels on a visit.

    In the video, the mother of two tearfully accused Putin of not only killing her husband. Putin also tried to deprive Russia of hope for freedom and justice. That's why she now wants to continue her husband's fight. In the video, which included many private pictures and recordings of Navalny's public appearances, she accused Putin of murdering her husband. “Three days ago, Vladimir Putin killed my husband Alexei Navalny,” she said.

    Her husband was tortured and tormented to death in the prison camp and repeatedly locked in solitary confinement in a small concrete box. The name of the person who carried out the murder on behalf of Putin will be published shortly, she announced.

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