Russia adds two key Navalny aides to ‘terrorists and extremists’ list

Russia has added two key allies of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny to its list of “terrorists and extremists”, days before the first anniversary of the opposition leader’s arrest.

Leonid Volkov and Ivan Zhdanov, who left Russia where authorities were cracking down on dissent and dissenting voices, were seen in a database compiled by the Federal Service for Financial Supervision (Rosfinmonitoring).

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In an Instagram post, Zhdanov, 33, mocked the ad in a public message to 41-year-old Volkov, saying: “Congratulations, brother.”

The past year has seen an unprecedented crackdown on dissent in Russia, including the imprisonment of Navalny, a major critic of Putin, last January, and the banning of his political organizations.

Navalny’s political organizations were labeled “extremist”, prompting his team to shut down the regional network that supported his political campaigns and corruption investigations.

Almost all of his top allies have since fled the country.

Navalny – President Vladimir Putin’s biggest domestic opponent – has been behind bars since returning to Moscow in January from Germany, where he was recovering from a nerve agent poisoning attack in Novichok that he and the West blamed on the Kremlin.

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