Bank accounts linked to Russian opposition leader Navalny frozen: report
Russian authorities on Thursday froze hundreds of bank accounts linked to embattled opposition leader Alexi Navalny in what his supporters say was a trumped-up effort to crack down on his political movement ahead of planned nationwide demonstrations this weekend, according to a report.
Investigators said bank accounts belonging to Navalny’s anti-corruption foundation, his campaign headquarters, and more than 100 linked individuals and legal entities were frozen as part of an investigation into alleged money laundering.
Thursday’s crackdown follows a major opposition rally on July 27 in which demonstrators protested a decision to exclude a dozen independent candidates from the ballot for next month’s local election in Moscow. The protests ended with nearly 1,400 arrests.
Navalny, who had been serving a 30-day sentence for calling an unsanctioned protest, was rushed to the hospital the next day from a detention facility with a severe allergy attack that his longtime physician said was consistent with chemical poisoning.
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Authorities on Thursday searched the Moscow office of Navalny’s foundation and the homes of several of his allies, taking away computers and documents as part of a supposed money-laundering investigation, Reuters reported. Navalny and his supporters maintain his anti-corruption foundation is transparent about its donations.
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Navalny’s allies were planning follow-up demonstrations across the country on this Saturday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.