According to Navalny, the trial is completely illegal. The politician states that nobody notifies him about the court session and neither he nor his lawyer received the summonses. Moreover, the court session takes place at the police station, not at the Khimki Court.
Associate of Navalny Leonid Volkov also reported about the illicit trial on Twitter. He noted that the court has started at 12:30 Moscow time.
Meanwhile, Head of the European Commission Ursula von der Leyen condemned the actions of the Russian authorities that detained Alexei Navalny right after his arrival in Moscow as the European Commission reported.
“I condemn the detention of Alexei Navalny yesterday by the Russian authorities, upon his return to Russia. The Russian authorities must immediately release him and ensure his safety. Detention of political opponents is against Russia's international commitments. We also continue to expect a thorough and independent investigation on the attack on Alexei Navalny's life. We will monitor the situation closely,” the document says.
However, Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov believes that the Russian authorities did everything right. According to him, the Russian authorities, in the case of Alexei Navalny, proceed from the legislation, not from concerns about the public image as ‘young lady coming for a ball’.
“Possibly, it is necessary to think about the public image bur we are not a young lady coming for a ball. We should, first of all, do our work. Our work lies in the implementation of Russian foreign policy. The case of Navalny obtained foreign policy meaning artificially and absolutely illegally and his detention is the competence of the law enforcement bodies,” Lavrov said.
As we reported earlier, Navalny returned to Russia on January 17. Officers of the search department of the Federal Penitentiary Service of Russia detained him right after his plane landed in Moscow.
It is worth noting that he has been on the country's federal wanted list since December 29, 2020, for repeated violations of the probationary period - Navalny is currently sentenced to conditional punishment.
Prior to that, the politician stayed in Germany, being treated at the Charite clinic and recovering from the poisoning by Novichok nerve agent in August 2020. The Russian law enforcers prosecute Navalny for "evading control measures", as he is the defendant in the Yves-Rocher case (2014). Navalny himself calls the case trumped-up and politically motivated.
Watch review of Year 2020 here: