Russia Releases Navalny's Body

Lyudmila Navalnaya apparently refused to negotiate with government
By Bob Cronin,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 24, 2024 1:20 PM CST
Russia Releases Navalny's Body
An unidentified man follows the orders of the authorities and removes flowers brought by people to pay respects to Alexei Navalny from the Memorial to Victims of Political Repression in St. Petersburg, Russia, on Saturday.   (AP Photo/Dmitri Lovetsky)

The Russian government has turned over the remains of Alexei Navalny to his mother, Lyudmila Navalnaya, the opposition leader's aides said Saturday, per Al Jazeera. "Alexei's body was given to his mother. Thank you to everybody who demanded this with us," Navalny spokesperson Kira Yarmysh posted Saturday on X. What's next isn't clear, Yarmysh wrote. "The funeral is yet to come," the post says. "We don't know whether the authorities will interfere with carrying it out in the way the family wants and as Aleksei deserves." Prison officials reported Navalny's death last week.

The government had given Navalny's mother a list of conditions for releasing his body that included holding his funeral in secret. But Lyudmila apparently did not negotiate with Russian authorities, per the BBC. Earlier Saturday, Yulia Navalnaya denounced President Vladimir Putin in a six-minute video posted on YouTube, per the New York Times. The opposition leader's wife said Putin was making a mockery of the Christian values he professes to hold as he tries to force Lyudmila to agree to a secret funeral. "Give us the body of my husband," Navalnaya says in the video. "You tortured him alive, and now you keep torturing him dead." (More Alexei Navalny stories.)

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