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Lawyer working for Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation forcibly deported from Russia

Source: Team Navalny

Belarusian national Vladlen Los — a lawyer working for Alexey Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, who was given notice of his expulsion from Russia last week — was forcibly taken to the Russian-Belarusian border on Sunday, January 24. Los described the incident himself in a video released on Team Navalny’s YouTube channel.

On Sunday, after the end of my jail term, I was detained once again by unidentified people in plain clothes. They handcuffed me and put a bag over my head. After that, I was loaded into a minibus and we drove for about 10 hours towards the border of the Republic of Belarus. 

According to Los, after midnight on Monday, January 25, the security officers informed him that he had overstayed the time period for leaving Russia “voluntarily” and that he was being deported with a five-year entry ban.

Los added that he wasn’t taken into custody upon arriving in Belarus. He has since left the country and, in his own words, is now safe.

On Thursday January 21, Vladlen Los was given an official notice ordering him to leave Russia by January 25 and banning him from returning for three years. The next day, he was arrested and jailed for three days on charges of disobeying police officials.

On January 23, demonstrations took place in cities across Russia, protesting the detention of opposition figure Alexey Navalny, who has been remanded in custody until February 15 for violating the terms of his probation in the Yves Rocher case.

According to the independent monitoring group OVD-Info, Russian law enforcement officials carried out a record number of arrests during the demonstrations — around 3,700 people were detained in 125 cities. The authorities have also opened at least 15 criminal cases in connection with the protests. 

Ahead of the rallies on January 23, law enforcement officials arrested a number of Navalny’s closest associates. Police detained his wife, Yulia Navalnaya, at the demonstration in Moscow on Saturday. She was released three hours later. 

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