1,700 detained in pro-Navalny protests

1,700 detained in pro-Navalny protests
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Hundreds of supporters of Alexei Navalny, a top critic of Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinRussian military says it test-fired hypersonic missile Is Ukraine Putin's Taiwan? Biden administration resists tougher Russia sanctions in Congress MORE, were arrested on Wednesday during protests over the treatment he has faced in jail. 

Authorities arrested more than 1,700 people at the protests against the jail Navalny is being held at for not allowing him to see a doctor of his choice, protest tracker OVD-Info said, according to Reuters.

Navalny’s health is in dire condition after being on a hunger strike for three weeks because authorities will not allow him to see a doctor of his choice.

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Protests erupted throughout Russia in response, with demonstrators in Moscow chanting “Freedom to Navalny,” “Let the doctors in,” and the name of Navalny’s wife, Yulia, who joined the protests, Reuters reported.

Protesters in Vladivostok had signs that said “Freedom for political prisoners” and “No war, repressions and torture!”

The exact number of people who protested is unclear, with the Russian government saying 6,000 protesters were protesting in Moscow compared to a Russian journalist saying 10,000 to 15,000, according to the news agency.

The number of protesters was still smaller than the protests that occurred after Navalny was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison in January.

Navalny is in jail due to violating his probation by flying to Germany to get medical attention from a poison attack that Navalny and many others have blamed on the Russian government.

Russia denies any involvement in the attack and said Navalny’s health is fine, while the opposition says he could die at any moment due to his hunger strike. 

Navalny has still not been allowed to see his own doctor despite his declining condition.