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‘Vladimir Putin killed my husband,’ says Alexei Navalny’s widow Yulia in new video as she vows to ‘build a new Russia’ and accuses officials of hiding his body while traces of Novichok poison disappear


Yulia Navalnya, the widow of dead Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, has today placed her husband’s death at the feet of Vladimir Putin, and accused the Kremlin of hiding his body to allow traces of poison to disappear. 

In a video message, Navalnya, 47, said: ‘Vladimir Putin killed my husband.’ 

She pledged to carry on her husband’s work and fight for a free Russia with the help of its citizens. 

‘I want to live in a free Russia, I want to build a free Russia,’ she said the video message entitled ‘I will continue the work of Alexei Navalny’.

Navalnaya accused the Russian authorities of hiding Navalny’s body and of waiting for traces of the Novichok nerve agent to disappear from his body.

In a video message, Yulia Navalnya, 47, (pictured) said: 'Vladimir Putin killed my husband.'

In a video message, Yulia Navalnya, 47, (pictured) said: ‘Vladimir Putin killed my husband.’

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died - 2.17pm - Russia's prison service put out a statement revealing his passing

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died - 2.17pm - Russia's prison service put out a statement revealing his passing

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died – 2.17pm – Russia’s prison service put out a statement revealing his passing

‘By killing Alexei, Putin killed half of me – half of my heart and half of my soul,’ Navalnaya said.

‘But I still have the other half, and it tells me that I have no right to give up. I will continue the work of Alexei Navalny, continue to fight for our country.’

‘I urge you to stand next to me,’ she said. ‘I ask you to share the rage with me. Rage, anger, hatred towards those who dared to kill our future.’

‘I address you with the words of Alexei, which I strongly believe: ‘There’s no shame in doing a little. There is shame in doing nothing. There is shame in allowing yourself to be intimidated.’

‘Russia – the free, peaceful, happy, beautiful Russia of the future about which my husband dreamed… I want to live in that Russia. I want mine and Alexei’s children to live in that Russia.

‘I want to build that with you, that which Alexei Navalny set forth. It is only this way – and there is no other way – that the senseless death he suffered will not be in vain.

‘Fight, and don’t give up. I am not afraid – and you will not fear anything.’

Lyudmila Navalnaya, the mother of late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, and his lawyer Alexei Tsvetkov walk out of an office of the Investigative Committee's regional department in the city of Salekhard

Lyudmila Navalnaya, the mother of late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, and his lawyer Alexei Tsvetkov walk out of an office of the Investigative Committee’s regional department in the city of Salekhard

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died - 2.17pm - Russia's prison service put out a statement revealing his passing

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died – 2.17pm – Russia’s prison service put out a statement revealing his passing

Navalny’s allies say they know why her husband was killed and would soon reveal the details, including the names of the people involved in his murder. The Kremlin has denied involvement in his death. 

Navalny’s mother, Lyudmila, has been unable to recover his body since his death on Friday. 

A close legal aide to the dissident, Kira Yarmysh, said Lyudmila, who was today seen at a regional office of Russia’s Investigative Committee, was told by authorities that his body would only be handed over following a full post-mortem examination. 

The prison service has been accused of delaying the return of his body.  

She was reportedly told that an initial post-mortem was inconclusive, and that a second one needed to be undertaken. 

On top of this, Lyudmila was initially told that his body had been taken to the town of Salekhard, near the penal colony he was being held in, but when she arrived the morgue was closed. 

Last night, CCTV footage that is believed to have shown a midnight motorcade made up of prison vehicles and two highway patrol cars that took Navalny’s corpse from the Polar Wolf prison was leaked. 

Since reports of his death were published, his family and allies have accused the Kremlin of deliberately hiding his body

Since reports of his death were published, his family and allies have accused the Kremlin of deliberately hiding his body

This handout photo published by Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on his instagram account, shows himself and his wife Yulia, posing for a photo in a hospital in Berlin, Germany

This handout photo published by Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny on his instagram account, shows himself and his wife Yulia, posing for a photo in a hospital in Berlin, Germany

In the security footage of the midnight motorcade, the Soviet-designed Federal Penitentiary Service van believed to be carrying Navalny is clearly seen flanked by an unmarked car and several police vehicles.

The drive from the Polar Wolf jail in Kharp went first to Labytnangi, and then crossed the frozen Ob, the world’s seventh longest river, to Salekhard, according to independent news outlet Mediazona which obtained the footage of the macabre journey.

The journey across the thick ice may have ended at a hospital morgue, where paramedics revealed Navalny’s body was covered in bruises, according to another news outlet, Novaya Gazeta Europe.

Russia’s prison service announced Navalny’s death on Friday.

It was most recently reported that Navalny died of ‘sudden death syndrome’, but no details were given to back this claim up.

Just two minutes after the time Navalny was reported to have died – 2.17pm – Russia’s prison service put out a statement revealing his passing.

Four minutes after this, a Telegram channel controlled by the Kremlin claimed he had died of a blood clot, and just seven minutes later Dmitry Peskov, the Kremlin spokesman, was talking to the media about it.

Since reports of his death were published, his family and allies have accused the Kremlin of deliberately hiding his body. 

Independent outlet Novaya Gazeta Europe yesterday reported that Navalny’s body shows signs of bruising that were caused by being held down while he suffered a seizure. 

It was most recently reported that Navalny died of 'sudden death syndrome', but no details were given to back this claim up

It was most recently reported that Navalny died of ‘sudden death syndrome’, but no details were given to back this claim up

Police officers detain a woman during a gathering in memory of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny near the Wall of Grief monument to the victims of political repressions in Moscow

Police officers detain a woman during a gathering in memory of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny near the Wall of Grief monument to the victims of political repressions in Moscow

Women with red carnations arrive to lay flowers for late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny at the "Wall of Grief" monument

Women with red carnations arrive to lay flowers for late Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny at the “Wall of Grief” monument

The news outlet spoke to a paramedic in the Salekhard ambulance service, close to the IK-3 penal colony, also known as ‘Polar Wolf’, in the town of Kharp, in the Yamalo-Nenetsk region about 1,200 miles northeast of Moscow, where Navalny was being held.

Paramedics found bruises on Navalny’s body, which is now under police guard in a morgue at Salekhard district clinical hospital, according to the independent news outlet.

‘Usually the bodies of people who die in prison are taken straight to the Bureau of Forensic Medicine on Glazkova Street, but in this case it was taken to the clinical hospital for some reason,’ the anonymous paramedic told the outlet.

‘As an experienced paramedic, I can say that the injuries described by those who saw them appeared to be from convulsions.

‘If a person is convulsing and others try to hold him down but the convulsions are very strong, then bruising appears. They also said he had a bruise on his chest — the kind that comes from indirect cardiac massage. 

‘So they did try to resuscitate him, and he probably died of cardiac arrest,’ the paramedic said, adding: ‘But nobody is saying anything about why he had a cardiac arrest.’ 

More to follow.  



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