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World Navalny aide urges sanctions on Russian oligarchs

05:37  03 march  2021
05:37  03 march  2021 Source:   afp.com

Anti-Putin Campaigners: It’s Time to Sanction the Large Adult Sons of Oligarchs and Cronies

  Anti-Putin Campaigners: It’s Time to Sanction the Large Adult Sons of Oligarchs and Cronies Back when he was still running Russia’s FSB, Nikolai Patrushev, a longtime Putin crony who now heads the Russian Security Council, famously referred to himself and his colleagues as representatives of the “new nobility.” Nepotism is now breeding a new generation of Russian “nobles,” who are poised to take over the Kremlin upon the retirement of their fathers. These princelings—some of whom already occupy exalted positions in the government and the corporate world—are accused of benefiting from their parents’ money, mostly stolen from the state, via off-shore accounts.

Navalny was one of four Russian opposition politicians to address the European parliament’s foreign affairs committee on Friday by video link. He is recovering in Germany from a poisoning attempt in August but has said he plans to return to Russia . He fell ill on a flight from Tomsk in Siberia to Navalny singled out the billionaire metals magnate and former Arsenal shareholder Alisher Usmanov, and said “no one in the Kremlin will treat European sanctions seriously” as long as Usmanov could moor his yacht in Barcelona or Monaco. He said sanctions against oligarchs such as Usmanov and

Alexei Navalny calls for EU sanctions on Russian oligarchs Navalny , who survived an assassination attempt with a chemical weapon in August and received treatment at a German hospital, told a hearing of the Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee that the EU should sanction individual oligarchs as cronies of a And he urged European leaders to uphold their own standards and values when it comes to dealing with Russia . He said Russian citizens would change the situation in Russia on their own, and dismissed assertions that the West is trying to carry out regime change. “The only thing we

A top aide of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny called for sanctions on top Russian oligarchs in an interview with AFP, as the United States followed the EU in imposing sanctions on some officials.

a man looking at the camera: Leonid Volkov said Navalny's anti-corruption movement was hoping to unseat many deputies from President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party in elections this year © PETRAS MALUKAS Leonid Volkov said Navalny's anti-corruption movement was hoping to unseat many deputies from President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party in elections this year

Leonid Volkov also said Navalny's anti-corruption movement was hoping to unseat "at least 60 to 70" deputies from President Vladimir Putin's United Russia party in elections this year.

The aide, who runs Navalny's political campaign across Russia, said EU sanctions against four Russian officials involved in Navalny's detention were a "good step forward", but "not enough".

Kremlin critic Navalny begins serving time for parole violation

  Kremlin critic Navalny begins serving time for parole violation Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny has been transferred to a penal colony east of Moscow to serve a term for violating parole, a public commission that monitors detainees' rights said Sunday. President Vladimir Putin's most prominent opponent was sentenced this month to two-and-a-half years at a facility in the Vladimir region about 200 kilometres (125 miles) east of the capital. He was convicted of violating parole terms while in Germany recovering from a poisoning attack.

The US has announced sanctions on Russians over the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny . The measures target a number of Russian government officials and entities and are being co-ordinated with similar moves by the EU, US officials said. " Russia 's attempt to kill Mr Navalny follows an alarming pattern of chemical weapons use by Russia ," one of the administration officials said. They are the first sanctions imposed on Russia by the administration of President Joe Biden. He has taken a tougher stance than his predecessor Donald Trump towards President Putin.

The Biden administration is preparing to impose sanctions on Russia over the poisoning and jailing of Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny this week, two administration officials tell CNN.

Washington on Tuesday also adopted sanctions on seven government officials, signalling a harder line from US President Joe Biden.

But, speaking in his office in the Lithuanian capital Vilnius, Volkov said: "What would really create leverage against Putin would be sanctioning the close circle of his oligarchs."

Volkov said he was "very disappointed" by remarks from EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell about sanctions being targeted at people "directly connected" to Navalny's arrest, arguing that oligarchs close to Putin were also linked.

"There is such a clear connection and we will do our best to convince European politicians that such a connection exists.

"But still, even if only those four people are on the list, it's a very important first step," said Volkov, who is currently wanted in Russia and its former Soviet allies on charges of encouraging minors to attend pro-Navalny demonstrations.

Navalny probably moved to prison camp, says lawyer

  Navalny probably moved to prison camp, says lawyer Lawyer says move would violate the law, adding that Navalny’s relatives have not been informed of his whereabouts. RIA news agency reported that Eva Merkacheva, a member of Moscow’s public monitoring committee for human rights, said Navalny was sent to a standard penal colony, the location of which should be disclosed when he arrived there. Navalny, 44, was arrested on January 17 after his return from Germany, where he spent five months recovering from a nerve-agent poisoning that he blamed on the Kremlin.

Surveillance footage, recorded in the early 2010s, appears to show a close associate of Alexey Navalny seeking cash and intelligence from an alleged British spy and suggesting his anti-corruption work may benefit firms in London. The person he met at a Moscow cafe was identified as James William Thomas Ford, then Second Secretary for political affairs of the UK embassy in Russia . The FSB suspected he was an MI6 agent working under diplomatic cover. The discussion presents problematic optics for Navalny and the FBK team, and appears to support the Russian government’s claim that

US and EU sanctions against high-ranking Russian officials for their role in the detention of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny have taken effect. A senior US official has stated: "The intelligence community assesses with high confidence that officers of Russia 's Federal Security Service FSB used a nerve agent known as Novichok to poison Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on August 20, 2020." US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said in an interview released Tuesday Washington intends to "take the appropriate actions as we see fit to make very clear that this kind of conduct is unacceptable

Volkov said key figures close to Putin who were not on the EU sanctions list "will definitely feel very vulnerable".

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov on Tuesday brushed off the sanctions, saying that "such a policy does not achieve its goals".


Video: Protesters rally on steps of Georgian parliament (Reuters)

- Amnesty 'weaponised by Putin' -

Navalny was jailed in January after returning to Moscow from Germany, where he had spent months recovering from a poisoning with a banned nerve agent he blames on Putin.

The Kremlin denies it was behind the attack.

The imprisonment of Putin's best-known opponent sparked nationwide protests that saw thousands of demonstrators detained and triggered calls in the West for Navalny's release.

The 44-year-old campaigner was reportedly transferred to a penal colony some 100 kilometres (60 miles) east of Moscow last week to serve out his sentence of two and a half years.

UN rights experts urge international probe of Navalny poisoning

  UN rights experts urge international probe of Navalny poisoning Agnes Callamard and Irene Khan say Kremlin critic’s poisoning was meant to send a ‘sinister warning’ to quash dissent.Agnes Callamard, the UN’s top expert on extrajudicial, summary and arbitrary executions, and Irene Khan, the expert on freedom of opinion and expression, made the call in a joint statement on Monday.

Navalny accused European politicians of hypocrisy by allowing oligarchs who grew rich off of Putin’s authoritarian rule, such as Alisher Usmanov and Roman Abramovich — billionaires who own stakes in U.K. football clubs — to keep luxury boats in European ports. Kara-Murza noted that he and Navalny were lucky compared to their colleague Boris Nemtsov, who was murdered in 2015 on a bridge near the Kremlin. And he urged European leaders to uphold their own standards and values when it comes to dealing with Russia . He said Russian citizens would change the situation in Russia on their own

The Biden administration has imposed sanctions on seven Russian officials in response to the poisoning and imprisonment of opposition leader Alexey Navalny .

Volkov said Navalny's campaign would try to field its own candidates in elections in September but, failing that, would call for "smart voting" in favour of other candidates to try to oust lawmakers from the ruling United Russia party.

"We expect that we will be able to unseat at least 60 to 70 incumbent United Russia members of the Duma... which will be a major blow for them," he said, adding that the aim was to "cause as much political damage to United Russia as possible".

Volkov said the elections were "crucial" because the next parliament will be in power during the 2024 presidential election when Putin will have to consider whether to run again and extend his more than two decades in power.

Despite a wave of arrests against organisers of Navalny's anti-corruption campaign, Volkov said they would be able to increase the number of regional offices to 45 from 37 currently.

Asked about Amnesty International's decision last month to strip Navalny of "prisoner of conscience" status because of his past ultra-nationalist views, Volkov said the respected human rights group had been "manipulated by Kremlin propaganda".

"It has been weaponised by Putin," he said.

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EU: targeted sanctions in Russia, privileged diplomacy for Burma .
© REUTERS - YVES HERMAN Brussels, February 22: Josep Borrell, head of European diplomacy welcomed his counterparts for a council largely devoted to the sanctions that could be taken against countries that violate fundamental rights. The 27 foreign ministers of the European Union are physically meeting in Brussels for the first time this year. On the menu of their discussions: the situation in Hong Kong, Russia, Venezuela and Burma.

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