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World Britain, France, and Germany said they will sanction Russia over Alexei Navalny's poisoning. Putin won't care.

11:40  10 october  2020
11:40  10 october  2020 Source:   businessinsider.com

Putin Tried to Poison Me, Says Alexei Navalny, as Kremlin Accuses Him of Working with CIA

  Putin Tried to Poison Me, Says Alexei Navalny, as Kremlin Accuses Him of Working with CIA The Russian opposition campaigner told Der Spiegel Vladimir Putin was behind his Novichok attack, which the Kremlin has dismissed.The anti-corruption campaigner spent 16 days in a coma after he fell ill on a flight on August 20. He had been transferred from a hospital in the Siberian city of Omsk to Charité hospital in Berlin. He is now recovering in the German capital.

Alexey Navalny : Russia ' s outspoken Putin critic. The foreign ministers of France and Germany released a joint statement Wednesday saying they were putting forward a UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said Britain would work with its international partners to take such sanctions forward.

The Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny says he believes Vladimir Putin ordered intelligence agencies to poison him, possibly to avoid a “Belarusian scenario” of civil unrest. Navalny , who is recovering in Germany after falling ill on a flight from Tomsk to Moscow in August

Alexei Navalny, Vladimir Putin are posing for a picture: A composite image of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and President Vladimir Putin. MLADEN ANTONOV,TIZIANA FABI/AFP via Getty Images © MLADEN ANTONOV,TIZIANA FABI/AFP via Getty Images A composite image of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and President Vladimir Putin. MLADEN ANTONOV,TIZIANA FABI/AFP via Getty Images
  • The UK, France, and Germany this week pledged to sanction Russia over the August 20 poisoning of Alexei Navalny, a vocal critic of President Vladimir Putin.
  • The sanctions will target "individuals deemed responsible" and "an entity involved in the Novichok program," France and Germany said.
  • It will likely have no effect in Moscow.
  • Sanctions were imposed following the 2018 poisoning of Sergei Skripal in England, and the 2019 killing of a Chechen rebel leader in Germany. Neither deterred Russia from trying to take out Navalny in Siberia.
  • A Russia expert told Business Insider there was "a very weak response" to those sanctions, adding: "We've long since gone past the point where Putin cares about what the West thinks about him."
  • Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories.

Three of Europe's largest powers pledged in no uncertain terms earlier this week to sanction Russia over the poisoning of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

Putin's attempt to explain away the poisoning of Alexei Navalny to France failed badly and helped unite Europe against him, intelligence sources say

  Putin's attempt to explain away the poisoning of Alexei Navalny to France failed badly and helped unite Europe against him, intelligence sources say A French security official said that a phone call in which Vladimir Putin attempted to claim that Alexei Navalny poisoned himself was a disaster.According to French media, Putin spoke with his French counterpart, Emmanuel Macron, last week about Navalny, who was poisoned with the novichok nerve agent in late August, and was evacuated to Europe for treatment.

Germany and France proposed EU sanctions on Russia over its involvement in the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny in a joint statement issued on Wednesday. "Proposals will target individuals deemed responsible for this crime and breach of international norms, based on their

and France directly accuse Russia of 'involvement and responsibility' in the poisoning of Putin -foe Germany and France said they would now seek EU sanctions against Russia Opposition figure Navalny fell ill on a flight from Siberia to Moscow in August Germany and France have directly accused Russia of 'involvement and responsibility' in the

France and Germany said in a joint statement, later echoed by the UK, that sanctions "will target individuals deemed responsible for this crime" and "an entity involved in the Novichok program."

Navalny, the top critic of President Vladimir Putin, was poisoned with the Novichok nerve agent on August 20. He spent 48 hours in a Russian hospital before he was permitted to fly to Berlin for specialist care, where he remained until September 22.

In an October 1 interview with Der Spiegel Navalny directly accused Putin of approving the hit.

Russia has denied carrying out the attack, but Europe isn't willing to take the Kremlin's word for it — and is hoping that imposing sanctions on an individual level will deter Russia from trying again.

Alexei Navalny posted a video showing bottles of water that he says were tainted with poison to try and kill him

  Alexei Navalny posted a video showing bottles of water that he says were tainted with poison to try and kill him Navalny, a top critic of Vladimir Putin, fell ill on August 20. German doctors have since confirmed he was poisoned with Novichok nerve agent.On August 20, Navalny fell ill on a flight from Tomsk, Siberia, to Moscow. The plane made an emergency landing in Omsk, Siberia, and Navalny was taken to hospital.

Earlier, France and Germany accused Russia of "involvement and responsibility" for the poisoning and announced they would seek to impose EU sanctions on "There is no plausible explanation for Mr Navalny ' s poisoning other than Russian involvement and responsibility for this appalling attack."

After Navalny was transferred to Berlin, the German government demanded that Russia open an investigation into Navalny ’ s " poisoning " and punish the culprits, but refused to cooperate in any such investigation, Szamuely says . He argues: “It is hard to see how Russia can open an investigation.

But the measures will fall on deaf ears in the Kremlin, as similar measures have numerous times before.

"We've long since gone past the point where Putin cares about what the West thinks about him. He knows that we're not friends," Mark Galeotti, a Russia scholar and senior associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute, told Business Insider.

Vladimir Putin wearing a suit and tie looking at the camera: Putin in Moscow, Russia, on September 28, 2020. Alexei Druzhinin\TASS via Getty Images © Alexei Druzhinin\TASS via Getty Images Putin in Moscow, Russia, on September 28, 2020. Alexei Druzhinin\TASS via Getty Images

"This to me sounds like a move that's more about demonstrating political will than actually having any real impact: something has to be done and here's something we can do," Galeotti said.

The individuals sanctioned by France, Germany, and the UK are "basically going to be people within the security apparatus who are already not looking to buy themselves an agreeable little gîte in France, or keep money in a bank account somewhere in Munich."

Putin Is Facing the Toughest Fight of His Presidency as Former USSR Goes up in Flames

  Putin Is Facing the Toughest Fight of His Presidency as Former USSR Goes up in Flames Yesterday, October 7, was Russian President Vladimir Putin’s 68th birthday, and, in keeping with his Soviet-style personality cult, it would normally have been an occasion for Putin to bask in public fanfare. But this year was different. Putin is holed up at his residence outside Moscow, where he has been since early April, avoiding infection from the coronavirus that is again rampant in Russia, while unrest surges in three countries of the former Soviet Union, and France and Germany are pushing for new EU economic sanctions against Russia because of the poisoning of Russian democrat Alexei Navalny.

Germany says Alexei Navalny was attacked with a type of nerve agent used against an ex-spy in the UK. There is "unequivocal proof" that Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny was poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent, Germany has said .

Read more: Alexei Navalny blames Vladimir Putin for poisoning . Despite evidence from German scientists that Navalny was poisoned using Novichok, Schröder said there were no Laboratories in Sweden and France confirmed the finding. Russia has denied responsibility for Navalny ' s condition.

"It's not going to influence Putin at all. If corrupt individuals lose out on some assets well, that's their lookout. It's not really going to change the opinions of people in the security apparatus, as they're in too deep," he said.

Past sanctions have done little to nothing

In the wake of the March 4, 2018, poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury, England, dozens of Russian diplomats were expelled from the US, Germany, France and the UK, with Russia responding in kind.

The EU and the US then imposed sanctions, with the latter limiting the export of sensitive national-security goods to Russia.

Alexei Navalny et al. looking at the camera: A composite image of Navalny in a photo posted September 22, 2020; and Yulia Skripal in London on May 23, 2018. Both photos were taken after they were released from the hospital following Novichok poisoning. They bore the same scar from an apparent tracheotomy. Alexei Navalny/Instagram; Dylan Martinez/Reuters; Business Insider © Alexei Navalny/Instagram; Dylan Martinez/Reuters; Business Insider A composite image of Navalny in a photo posted September 22, 2020; and Yulia Skripal in London on May 23, 2018. Both photos were taken after they were released from the hospital following Novichok poisoning. They bore the same scar from an apparent tracheotomy. Alexei Navalny/Instagram; Dylan Martinez/Reuters; Business Insider

That appeared to have little to no effect on Russia's behavior. The country has continued its attempts to silence its critics, and shrugged off accusations as hearsay.

The poisoning of critic who exposed Putin regime's corruption (Opinion)

  The poisoning of critic who exposed Putin regime's corruption (Opinion) Garry Kasparov writes that Alexey Navalny is the latest critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin to fall victim to poisoning. Western leaders must pay attention to what is happening in Russia, and re-think their relationship with Putin's government.Navalny came to prominence as an anti-corruption blogger, using investigation techniques and public documents to expose the incredible scale of looting perpetrated by Russia's ruling elite. He went on YouTube with photos of the spectacular yachts and mansions owned by Russian politicians with modest salaries.

JUST WATCHED. Germany : Alexey Navalny poisoned with nerve agent Novichok. Navalny remains in a serious condition at the intensive care unit of the Charité Hospital in Berlin. But Navalny ' s supporters are now pointing the finger of blame directly at Russian President Vladimir Putin .

Friends of Alexei Navalny (pictured) have pointed the finger at Putin after the opposition leader fell ill on a flight in Siberia and was airlifted to Berlin in Kremlin dismisses 'empty noise' claims that Vladimir Putin was behind Alexei Navalny ' s ' poisoning ' as France says opposition leader was the victim of a

On August 23, 2019, the Chechen rebel leader Zelimkhan Khangoshvili, who fought Russia in the 1990s, was shot dead in broad daylight in Berlin.

In the aftermath, Germany expelled two Russian diplomats and in June 2020, formally accused Russia of ordering the hit.

And yet, 14 months after the hit on Khangoshvili, Russia is once again facing sanctions following its most recent, high-profile assassination target: Navalny.

Alexei Navalny et al. sitting in a room: Navalny and his family pose for a picture at Charité hospital in Berlin, Germany, in this undated image obtained from social media September 15, 2020. Reuters © Provided by Business Insider Navalny and his family pose for a picture at Charité hospital in Berlin, Germany, in this undated image obtained from social media September 15, 2020. Reuters

A Central European intelligence official, who works in opposition to Russian intelligence services, previously told Business Insider that Russian attacks on Navalny would continue upon his return, and that Putin will not care about sanctions.

Navalny is currently in Berlin, where he received treatment, but has said that he will return to Russia.

'A symbolic, rather than a significant response'

Galeotti, the Russian expert, said that while there was ultimately little change inside Russia following the reaction to the Skripal hit, it did shock officials in the country.

"The thing with the Skripal case was that it was a massive multinational expulsion of Russian spies and it was one that caught the Russians by surprise," he told Business Insider.

"They had no idea this big wave of additional expulsions was coming. That was genuinely shocking to the Russians. It had a genuine impact on their intelligence activities."

But ultimately, Galeotti said, "not only was there a very weak reponse to [the sanctions] but now, with Navalny again, it's a symbolic rather than a significant response."

"I suspect that the Kremlin will complain, it will kick up a fuss, but in practice, I think it will be fine. "

Read the original article on Business Insider

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"Is it, in your mind worth your life?" Three years later, Lesley Stahl re-asks the Russian opposition leader if the recent assassination attempt has changed his perspective.The Russian opposition leader recently survived an assassination attempt where he was believed to be poisoned. This was the latest and most serious threat to his life.

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