Alexei Navalny’s mother has called on Vladimir Putin to hand over her son’s body “immediately” after authorities told her she would not be able to see him for at least 14 days.
Lyudmila, who has been fighting to recover her son’s body, said in a video statement five days after her son’s death: “I ask you, Vladimir Putin, that the solution to the problem depends only on you.” Let me finally see my son. I demand that Alexei’s body be released immediately so that he can be buried humanely.’
Navalny, 47, fell unconscious and died suddenly on Friday after a walk through the ‘Polar Wolf’ prison colony above the Arctic Circle, where he was serving a three-decade sentence, the prison service said.
The West and Navalny’s supporters say Putin is responsible for Navalny’s death. The Kremlin has denied involvement and said Western claims that Putin was responsible were unacceptable.
Putin has not made any public comments on Navalny’s death, but it has further deepened a yawning schism in relations between Moscow and the West caused by the nearly two-year war in Ukraine.
Lyudmila Navalnya (pictured) has been fighting for prison authorities to return her son’s body.
Vladimir Putin has been accused of orchestrating the death of Alexei Navalny
But he handed major promotions to prison bosses just days after the dissident’s death, in a move that was criticized for rewarding them for his death.
The key promotion fell to the first deputy director of the Federal Penitentiary Service [FSIN] Valery Boyarinev, 53 years old, promoted to the rank of colonel general.
The human rights group gulagu.net, which highlights prison abuses and is run by exiled Vladimir Osechkin, alleged that he is the “curator of the transporters of torture and special measures against Alexei Navalny and thousands of Ukrainian prisoners.”
The group said: ‘As of July 2022, this experienced sadist… holds the position of first deputy and oversees all operational work of the 21st century Gulag.
‘The Lubyanka [FSB security service] He has been promoting this executive executioner for a long time.
“And now, for the murder of Alexei Navalny, dictator Putin assigns him the rank of colonel general.”
The accusations continued: “Boyarinev fulfilled Putin’s wish: the physical elimination of his main political opponent.”
People gathered to lay flowers in tribute to Alexei Navalny at the monument, a large rock on the Solovetsky Islands, where the first camp of the Gulag political prison system was established, in St. Petersburg.
Reports of Navalny’s death emerged on Friday
More than 400 Russians arrested for paying respects to dead dissident
Russian investigators will not hand over the body of Russian opposition leader Alexi Navalny for 14 days, his team has revealed.
And it was “under the supervision of Boyarinev [that] Hundreds of Ukrainian prisoners were tortured, forcing many to confess to genocide and executions of civilians to justify the war.
It was alleged that Boyarinev previously limited the amount of food Navalny could get in prison.
After Boyarinev’s promotion, signed in a decree by Putin three days after authorities said Navalny died, he is likely to become the next director of the growing prison service famous for torturing inmates.
Other senior prison officials were promoted in the days after Navalny’s death, with no official cause revealed.
Alexander Rozin, 41, another deputy director of the Russian prison system, becomes a lieutenant general.
Two others were promoted to major general: the head of the FSIN affairs department, Dmitry Sharovatov, and the head of the FSIN personnel department, Alexander Fedorov.
Yesterday, Russian investigators said they would not hand over Navalny’s body for at least 14 days, his team revealed, after his widow, Yulia, claimed he had been poisoned with Novichok.
His widow, Yulia Navalnya (pictured), claimed he had been poisoned with Novichok.
Tributes to the late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny in front of a monument with a work by the late Russian poet Alexander Pushkin, in Seoul
The British ambassador to the Russian Federation rises after laying flowers to pay his last respects to Alexei Navalny.
Navalny’s spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh said the Investigative Committee, the country’s main criminal investigation agency, informed Lyudmila Navalnaya that the official investigation into the death had been expanded.
“They lie, they buy time and they don’t even hide it,” Yarmysh wrote in X.
Yulia Navalnaya accused Russian authorities of hiding Navalny’s body to wait for traces of the nerve agent to disappear.
She met with European leaders in Brussels just hours after releasing her own video statement in which she vowed to pick up where Alexei left off and placed the blame squarely on Putin for her husband’s death.
European diplomats said she reiterated her determination to continue the fight and called on the bloc to do more to attack Putin’s circle, prompting a loud cheer in the room.
He also warned against reaching agreements with the Russian leader or expecting him to change, they said.