Russian opposition leader says he is no longer considered an ‘escape risk.’
Jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny said Monday that prison authorities have changed his status from “escape risk” to “extremist” and “terrorist.”
Navalny was summoned to a prison commission — “the largest … that I have ever seen” — that voted unanimously in favor of the change.
The Kremlin critic joked on his Instagram account that the “news is good” because being classed as an escape risk involves more “accounting.” He said he was “terribly tired” of having to confirm his presence via video recording every two hours.
According to Navalny, 70 percent of those classed as “extremists” in prison are Muslim. Others are nationalists or football fans, he added.
Navalny was arrested in Moscow in January after returning from Germany where he was treated after being poisoned with a nerve agent.The 45-year-old was sentenced to two years and eight months for alleged parole violations.
In June, a Russian court banned Navalny’s organizations, including his Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK), from operating and labeled it as “extremist.”
In September, the Russian Investigative Committee opened another criminal case against Navalny and his allies, charging him with setting up an “extremist group.” If convicted, Navalny could be jailed for 10 more years.