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26 Jan, 2021 14:35

Court date for jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny brought forward to Thursday as allies call for another weekend of protests

Court date for jailed opposition figure Alexey Navalny brought forward to Thursday as allies call for another weekend of protests

An appeal from the lawyers of detained anti-corruption campaigner Alexey Navalny will be heard later this week, an associate revealed on Tuesday, as his supporters say they're working to organize another wave of protests.

Leonid Volkov, one of Navalny’s most high-profile allies, took to Twitter to post a copy of a letter received by advocates working for the opposition figure from Khimkinsky Court, in the Moscow region. In it, jurists confirm that a plea will be heard on Thursday to release Navalny from Matrosskaya Tishina prison, where he is currently awaiting a full trial, due to take place in early February.

Volkov added that “all of a sudden, the gears of ‘justice’ have started turning, and today the lawyers have been notified that the appeal against the arrest has been scheduled for 28 January – the day after tomorrow. Completely out of the blue.”

Also on rt.com Widespread arrests & dozens of police injured in pro-Navalny protests in Russia as organizers say MORE TO COME next weekend

Instead of welcoming the speedy consideration of Navalny’s case to be released from behind bars, Volkov suggested it was a “Kremlin game.” “Let's not pay too much attention to it,” he added, urging activists too stick to their plans and go ahead with further protests this coming weekend.

Last weekend, hundreds of people, including a number of children, were detained by police at rallies across the country. Dozens of officers and demonstrators were injured, and footage of the violence was shared widely online.

Earlier this month, a court jailed Navalny for 30 days after he landed at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport. He is accused of violating the terms of a three-and-a-half year sentence, suspended for a total of six years, handed down for a previous fraud conviction. He had been transferred to Berlin’s Charite hospital in a comatose state after what his supporters say was a state-sponsored assassination attempt with the nerve agent Novichok.

The Kremlin has denied and ridiculed those claims, with President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, adding that Navalny has a “persecution complex” and allegedly compares himself to Jesus.

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