In a surprise twist on the Alexei Navalny saga, and on the very day that it’s being widely reported Biden is preparing sanctions on Russia as punishment for his alleged poisoning by nerve agent last August, the human rights organization Amnesty International has withdrawn its formal designation of Navalny as a “prisoner of conscience”.
US state-funded Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty reports the following on Tuesday:
Amnesty International has reportedly withdrawn its recent designation of Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny’s as a “prisoner of conscience” over his alleged advocacy of violence and discrimination and comments that included hate speech.
Aleksandr Artemyev, the rights watchdog’s media manager for Russia and Eurasia, confirmed the decision to Mediazona on February 23 after the news was first reported by U.S. journalist Aaron Mate.
Alexei Navalny, via AP
And just like that it appears the narrative which cast Navalny and his supporters as some kind of ‘anti-Putin freedom fighters’ has been deflated.
The early February street protests following Navalny’s arrest after he arrived from Berlin where he’d been recovering from an alleged poisoning were widely supported by officials in the West, including by the US and some European embassies in Moscow…