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Russia's Navalny wins EU rights prize

Russia's Navalny wins EU rights prize

FILE PHOTO: Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny is seen on a screen via a video link during a hearing to consider his lawsuits against the penal colony over detention conditions there, at the Petushki district court in Petushki, Russia May 26, 2021. REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

BRUSSELS: Jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny was awarded the European Parliament's annual human rights prize on Wednesday (Oct 20) for his efforts to challenge President Vladimir Putin's grip on power.

Navalny, 45, who was poisoned in August 2020 by what Western nations said was a nerve agent, is serving a 2-1/2-year sentence for parole violations he calls trumped up. The EU has imposed sanctions on Russian officials over Navalny's poisoning and imprisonment.

The largest group in the European Parliament, the EPP Group, announced the prize on Twitter.

Moscow denies any wrongdoing and accuses the EU of interfering in its domestic affairs.

Past winners of the 50,000 euro (US$59,000) Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought, named after Soviet dissident Andrei Sakharov, include South African president Nelson Mandela, Venezuela's democratic opposition and Pakistani education activist Malala Yousafzai.

 

Source: Reuters

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