Navalny’s imprisonment inspires protests across Russia

Navalny+has+successfully+used+the+internet+as+a+tool+to+amplify+his+cause.+His+video+titled+%22Putin%27s+palace.+History+of+world%27s+largest+bribe%22+has+113+million+views+on+YouTube.

Sonali Carumbaya

Navalny has successfully used the internet as a tool to amplify his cause. His video titled “Putin’s palace. History of world’s largest bribe” has 113 million views on YouTube.

Auguste McDaniel, Staff Writer

Alexei Navalny is a 44 year old vlogger, opposition leader, and politician who has been unveiling secrets about the Russian government since 2007. He was expelled from Russia’s democratic party, “Демократическая Партия России, Demokraticheskaya Partiya Rossii.” 

He then created online content on corruption within the Russian Government, from Putin’s Palace past briberies, to control of online media and services. Navalny has blown the lid on many cases and caused an uprising amongst Russian youth.

The Russian government has fought Navalny’s claims, forbidding him from running for office in 2013, only allowing 6 opposition parties out of 69 in Russia’s political Parliament “Duma” (compared to Putin’s 342 seats in Parliament), and even attempting to poison Navalny via Cocktail. None of these challenges have silenced the critic.

However, Navalny may be facing his most difficult charge yet, as he was recently arrested for a 2014 conviction involving fraud. 

His arrest has led to the emergence of protests and riots across Russia. Although opposed by the government, the demonstrators have been supported by several groups, including “Russia of the Future” party, which raised thousands of dollars for victims of police brutality. This widespread attention lead to the trending of #FreeNavalny.

As of now, all eyes are on Russia. Although pressured by the possibility of EU sanctions and widespread demands for Navalny’s release, the Moscow court sentenced Navalny to two and a half years in prison. 

However, this fight is far from over: the Russian population will continue to protest and fight against government corruption.