Navalny blames authorities for using criminal proceeding to bar him from elections

Alexei Navalny file photo

KIROV. Dec 5 (Interfax) – Opposition activist Alexei Navalny believes that the authorities are trying to use criminal proceedings as a way to bar him from nomination in elections.

“They want to deprive me of the electoral right. If this process begins, I will again be deprived of the electoral right for three years,” Navalny said at the Kirov Leninsky District Court tasked with hearing the case of Navalny and Pyotr Ofitserov anew.

He said that Ofitserov and he would win the case in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) again.

As to whether arrested former Kirov Regional Governor Nikita Belykh would testify against him, the opposition activist told the media he did not deem that to be possible.

“I do not think that Belykh will testify against me,” Navalny said.

On November 16, the Russian Supreme Court Presidium upheld the statement by the Russian Supreme Court chairman regarding reinstatement of the proceeding in the context of the ECHR judgment and repealed the sentence against Navalny and Ofitserov, who were given five and four years, respectively, on charges of major embezzlement in the Kirovles case. The case was returned to the Kirov District Court for hearing by different judges.

[featured image is file photo, from different occasion]