D H
Mar 9 · Last update 1 mo. ago.

Is Alexei Navalny a genuine prisoner of conscience?

Alexei Navalny is an anti-corruption activist, a lead Russian opposition politician, and an outspoken critic of Vladimir Putin, who came to prominence through his popular blog and YouTube show in which he published videos and documents on the alleged corruption of Russian oligarchs and businessmen. On the 20th August 2020 Navalny was taken to hospital after falling into a coma on an internal Russian flight, days later he was taken to Berlin to receive medical treatment as his illness was found to be a politically motivated poisoning by a Novichok nerve agent. Upon Navalny’s return to Russia he was arrested for violating a suspended sentence, something he has claimed is politically motivated. However Navalny seems to be somewhat of a divisive figure, describing himself as a democratic nationalist, Navalny has founded nationalist political groups that were aligned with other more nefarious ultra-nationalist groups. He has also marched in anti-immigration marches from 2006 and has organised a march himself in 2011, as well as releasing various anti-immigration videos. Seemingly in light of this Amnesty International somewhat controversially withdrew his status as a prisoner of consciousness in February 2021. So, who is Alexei Navalny? Is he a genuine opposition figure? Is he a genuine force for good in Russia, or an opportunist or dangerous nationalist?
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A problem of nuance
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Amnesty International are empowering Putin
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A problem of nuance

There is a very strong parallel between Alexei Navalny and Myanmar's Aung Sang Suu Kyi, both are political actors who "the West" held up as an answer to democratic progression in their respective countries, but actors that also holds views the west finds deplorable and are arguably not democratic or regressive. Just as Aung Sang Suu Kyi failed to denounce the genocide that occurred under her watch, so Navalny failed to really denounce his anti-immigration stance and his association with ethno-nationalists. The prisoner of conscience label is just political and ultimately meaningless, the situation is much more nuanced that most media institutions usually allow, what Navalny really is is a tool, a wedge to cause political pressure in Russia. The George W. Bush way of seeing things as "us against them" is tired and dated, but this black and white filter in which to view the world still plagues many of these issues at the forefront of global politics.

rferl.org/a/russia-navalny-nationalist-fears/25059277.html nytimes.com/2020/11/14/world/asia/myanmar-aung-san-suu-kyi-election.html rferl.org/a/navalny-failure-to-renounce-nationalist-past-support/31122014.html

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D H
Mar 21
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Amnesty International are empowering Putin

Amnesty international effectively cancelling Navalny by removing his prisoner of conscience status begs the question, is undermining Navalny and playing into the hands of Putin the right thing to do? This is all the result of a Russian misinformation campaign started by RT (Russia Today), a lot of the negative misinformation about Navalny is coming from the Russian government. A representative from Amnesty International have themselves recognised that there is a coordinated Russian campaign to discredit Navalny internationally. Other Russian prisoners of conscience are now renouncing their status in support of Navalny, he should be recognised as such as he is a genuine political prisoner and democratic opposition member that is being punished for exposing corruption linked to Putin.

cbsnews.com/news/alexei-navalny-amnesty-international-prisoner-of-conscience-prison-transfer meduza.io/en/news/2021/02/23/amnesty-international-rescinds-alexey-navalny-s-prisoner-of-conscience-status-because-of-past-hate-speech-following-rumored-campaign-by-individuals-tied-to-russia-today

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D H
Mar 10
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