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Updated February 16th, 2024 at 20:28 IST

'I Don’t Want to Hear Condolences,' Navalny's Mother Reacts to His Demise

Shortly after the news of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny stirred headlines, his mother Lyudmila Navalnaya said that she saw him “healty and alive".

Reported by: Bhagyasree Sengupta
Alexei Navalny
Russia's opposition figure, Alexei Navalny, is dead. | Image:AP
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Shortly after the news of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny stirred headlines, his mother Lyudmila Navalnaya said that she saw him “alive, healthy and cheerful,” on February 12, just days before he collapsed and died. According to the Russian news outlet Novaya Gazeta, Navalny's mother who was shattered by the news, rejected all the condolences and insisted that his son was healthy. The 47-year-old Russian politician was the most visible and persistent critic of the country's President Vladimir Putin. He was serving his long prison sentence in a jail which was about 40 miles north of the Arctic Circle. 

“I don’t want to hear any condolences. We saw him in prison on the (Feb) 12, in a meeting. He was alive, healthy and happy," Russian news outlet Novaya Gazeta quoted Navalnaya. The death of Navalny was confirmed by the federal penitentiary service of the region where Navalny was incarcerated. In the statement, the Russian authority stated that Navalny “felt unwell after a walk and almost immediately lost consciousness”. “All necessary resuscitation measures were carried out but did not yield positive results,” the statement read. Meanwhile, the Kremlin also stated that it was paramedics that confirmed the death. “The paramedics confirmed the death of the convict,” Kremlin stated in the statement. They also confirmed that Russian President Vladimir Putin had been informed about the matter. 

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The cause of death is still not clear

While the penitentiary service confirmed his death, they are yet to reveal the main cause of the death. Last year, the Russian opposition leader was tested in hospital after his team complained about malnourishment and other ailments due to mistreatment in the prison. Meanwhile, Navalny's lawyer told Novaya Gazeta that his family is requesting privacy in the tough situation. “Alexei had a lawyer at his place on Wednesday,” Leonid Solovyev, his laywer, told Novaya Gazeta. “Everything was normal then.”  Navalny was survived by his wife Yulia, and their two children.

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On February 14, his team shared the Russian opposition leader's message for his wife in prison. “Babe, we have everything like in a song: cities between us, airport runway lights, blue blizzards and thousands of kilometers,” the Russian opposition leader said in an emotional message. “But I feel you are near me every second, and I love you more and more,” the Instagram post further reads. 

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Published February 16th, 2024 at 20:28 IST

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