US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo took to Twitter late Sunday to criticize Russia’s decision to arrest Alexei Navalny, an opposition leader who has just returned to Moscow after recovering from nerve poisoning, which he blames. The Kremlin.
“Deeply concerned about Russia’s decision to arrest Alexei Navalny,” Pompeo tweeted. “Confident political leaders are not afraid of competing votes, nor do they see the need to use violence against political opponents or to detain them illegally.”
Jake Sullivan, national security adviser to President-elect Joe Biden, also took to Twitter to call for Navalny’s immediate release.
Navalny’s detention during passport control at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo Airport was widely expected, as Russia’s prison service said it had violated parole conditions under a 2014 embezzlement sentence.
Navalny traveled from Berlin to Moscow after recovering in Germany from his poisoning in August. Confusion bypassed his arrival in Russia – his plane was to land at Moscow’s Vnukovo Airport, where supporters and media were waiting.
The 44-year-old man, who is President Vladimir Putin’s most prominent political enemy, has dispelled fears of his arrest as he boarded a plane in Berlin.
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“It’s impossible. I’m an innocent person,” he said.
James Rodgers and the Associated Press of Fox News contributed to this report