Navalny’s Mother Receives Her Son’s Tortured Body

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The body of Alexei Navalny, a Russian opposition leader who died unexpectedly in prison nine days ago, was handed over to his mother in the remote Arctic city of Salekhard on Saturday, according to his spokeswoman. In a video message before the release of the body, Navalny’s widow Yulia Navalnaya accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of “torturing” the corpse of a political opponent, calling him “demonic.”

Navalny’s allies warned supporters not to let their guard down, with his spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh expressing uncertainty about Russian authorities allowing the family to hold a funeral according to their wishes and the way Alexei deserves.

In a video posted on YouTube, Navalnaya pledged to continue fighting against Putin’s regime, questioning his faith and accusing him of holding her husband’s body “hostage.” Navalny’s mother, Lyudmila, stated that Russian investigators were withholding his body at a morgue in Salekhard, pressuring her to agree to a private funeral. She mentioned that an official claimed the body was decomposing.

Navalny’s aides reported that authorities threatened to bury him at the prison colony where he died unless his family met their demands. Since returning to the Russian presidency in 2012, Putin has presented himself as a defender of traditional values against Western liberalism and emphasized his connection to the Orthodox Church. Navalnaya described her husband as a devoted Christian and activist motivated by Christian beliefs, citing his practices of attending church and observing Lent even during his imprisonment.

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