Network of Navalny’s offices are being closed down amid crackdown

A top ally of imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny said Thursday that the network of the politician’s offices in Russia is being closed as authorities seek to have it and Navalny’s Foundation for Fighting Corruption outlawed as extremist groups.

Also on Thursday, Navalny made his first public appearance in weeks, facing a court via video link from behind bars. The politician looked gaunt after a three-week hunger strike, but still was able to slam the Kremlin in an emotional speech.

His embattled team has faced a major challenge this month. The Moscow prosecutor’s office petitioned a court to declare both the regional offices and Navalny’s anti-corruption organization as extremist groups, a label that would outlaw their activities, expose members and supporters to lengthy prison terms.

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Source: Associated Press – DARIA LITVINOVA

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