Kremlin critic Navalny jailed for third time this year

Marsha Scott
October 4, 2017

The standoff between Moscow and the West will not ease until Russian President Vladimir Putin leaves office, a top European Union diplomat has claimed.

Russian President Vladimir Putin talked about the recent unrest in Spain while receiving the credentials of 20 new ambassadors to Russia on Tuesday.

He reiterated the Kremlin's aspiration to restore ties based on "equality, respect for national interests and non-interference with each other's internal affairs".

"The current level of the ties can not satisfy us", Mr Putin said.

Putin again expressed condolences to the American people following the Las Vegas shooting which killed at least 59 people and wounded more than 500.

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After he announced his presidential bid previous year, Navalny, arguably Russia's most popular opposition politician, inspired a grassroots campaign in Russian regions to support his nomination.

Although Mr Trump has called Russia's interference in the 2016 presidential election a hoax pushed by Democrats to sully his victory at the polls, Mr Huntsman said at his confirmation hearing last week that "there is no question, underline, no question" that Moscow interfered. At the time, Moscow decided not to retaliate, hoping to mend relations with the incoming administration of President Donald Trump.

The Trump administration then ordered the closure of the Russian Consulate in San Francisco on August 31, as well as a consular annex in NY and a chancery annex in Washington, DC.

Navalny, 41, said in court that he is being persecuted for political reasons. It added that United States authorities "completely" seized the Consulate General and the administrative building, which represented "a violation of global law".

Relations between Russian Federation and the United States cooled following Russia's annexation of Crimea in 2014 and its support for separatists in eastern Ukraine, where fighting since 2014 has left 10,000 people dead.

Other reports by MaliBehiribAe

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