×

UK Summons Russian Diplomats Over Navalny’s Death

The Foreign Office "summoned the Russian embassy to make clear that we hold the Russian authorities fully responsible".


Dozens of people gathered outside the Russian embassy in London carrying signs in English and Russian saying: “Stop Putin”, “Assassins” and “We are Navalny”. Credit: Daniel LEAL / AFP

 

The UK government said it had summoned Russian embassy diplomats “to make clear that we hold the Russian authorities fully responsible” for the death of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.

Russian officials announced the  47-year-old had died on Friday in an Arctic prison, a month before an election poised to extend President Vladimir Putin’s hold on power.

“In recent years, the authorities imprisoned him on fabricated charges, poisoned him with a banned nerve agent, and sent him to an Arctic penal colony,” a Foreign Office spokesperson said late Friday.

READ ALSO: Police Arrest 100 Protesters In Russia Over Navalny’s Memorial

“No one should doubt the brutal nature of the Russian system,”

The Foreign Office “summoned the Russian embassy to make clear that we hold the Russian authorities fully responsible”.

“Alexei Navalny dedicated his life to exposing the corruption of the Russian system, calling for free and open politics, and holding the Kremlin to account,” the spokesperson said.

Foreign minister David Cameron on Saturday warned of “consequences” over Navalny’s death.

“Reflecting overnight makes you think what an incredibly brave man this was. His life revealed so much about the true nature of Putin’s ghastly regime and his death has revealed that all over again,” he told broadcasters at the Munich Security Conference.

“There should be consequences. When appalling human rights outrages like this take place, what we do is we look at whether there are individual people that are responsible and whether there are individual measures and actions we can take.

“I am clear that we will be taking action and I would urge others do to the same,” he added.

Supporters of Navalny turned out across Europe and in the United States on Friday evening to pay tribute to the man widely acknowledged as Russia’s main opposition figure, even when he was behind bars.

In London, dozens of people gathered in front of the Russian embassy carrying signs in English and Russian saying: “Stop Putin”, “Assassins” and “We are Navalny”.