ALDE Group urges Russian authorities to immediately release Alexei Navalny and all detained
The Liberal and Democrat Group in the European Parliament applauds the courage of citizens across Russia, who are standing up for their rights and for government accountability. ALDE strongly criticises the detention of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and hundreds of other protesters during the anti-corruption protests in Moscow.
ALDE Group leader, Guy Verhofstadt, urges Russian authorities to immediately release the protesters and respect human rights:
“I welcome the massive peaceful protests of citizens across Russia, which shows people are ready to stand up for their freedoms and for accountability of government, in spite of intimidation by public authorities. The Kremlin did not respect freedom of assembly and suppressed the demonstrations, which shows President Putin is afraid of his own citizens. We urge Russian authorities to respect all their obligations as members of the Council of Europe and as signatories to the European Convention of Human Rights.”
MEP, Hans van Baalen (VVD, The Netherlands) ALDE spokesman on Russia and Ukraine, said:
"The massive protests in the streets of Moscow and many other cities show that the Russian people are fed up with Putin regime’s corruption. The arrest of several protestors, including opposition leader Alexei Navalny, is a signal of fear and weakness on the side of Putin. The Russian authorities should immediately release Navalny and the other protestors and lift the ban on anti-corruption rallies. The people of Russia have the right to protest against endemic corruption and oppression in their country."