Late Russian opposition leader, ALEXEI NAVALNY, was close to being freed along with two US nationals in exchange for jailed Russian assassin before he died


Monday, February 26, 2024 – Late Russian opposition figure, Alexei Navalny was close to being freed along with two US nationals in exchange for a jailed Russian assassin when he was 'killed' in the Arctic gulag in a deal allegedly brokered by former Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich, the Putin critic's team has claimed.

Maria Pevchikh, a senior aide for Navalny, said today that talks about exchanging him and two unnamed US nationals for Vadim Krasikov, a Russian FSB security service hit man in jail in Germany, were in their final stages at the time of his death.

She also revealed: 'Roman Abramovich was the one who delivered the proposal to swap Navalny to Putin…as an informal negotiator communicating with American and European officials, and at the same time, representing Putin, an unofficial channel of communication with the Kremlin.'

This comes after the humanitarian group claimed Navalny was cold-tortured in the Polar Wold penal colony before his death on February 16.

Russian organisation - which highlights prison abuses - is now pleading with Navalny's family to ensure samples from Navalny's body are independently examined abroad.

It is far from clear that the Russian authorities will permit any independent probe after claiming Navalny, who was serving a 19-year prison sentence at the Arctic colony, died from 'sudden death syndrome'.

Pevchikh said today Putin really wanted Krasikov, who he sees as a Russian patriot, back, but he 'was clearly told that the only way to get Krasikov was to exchange him for Navalny'.

She added that she believes Putin couldn't 'tolerate Navalny being free', so he got 'rid of the bargaining chip' after he realised an exchange for Krasikov was on the cards.

Pevchikh said: 'It's absolutely illogical, absolutely irrational, it's the behaviour of a mad mafioso. But the point is that Putin has gone mad with hatred for Navalny. Putin hated him so much.'

Navalny's wife Yulia, 47, has claimed that her husband was murdered on Vladimir Putin's orders and previously accused the dictator of Satanism in failing to pass the body to his family - which only happened a week after his death.

But yesterday, Kyrylo Budanov, the head of Ukraine's GUR military intelligence service, suggested his death could be down to natural causes as he claimed Navalny died from a blood clot'. said: 'Today his body is the main proof of Putin's crime against Alexei himself and against democracy in Russia.

'Navalny's body is the main evidence of his murder and subsequent manipulations with him in order to conceal this terrible crime committed to please the dictator Putin….

'If he were alive, we are sure that in a similar case, he himself would say that the most important thing today is examination, research by the best experts in the world and the presentation of comprehensive evidence, and only after that - the funeral.

'We appeal to the family of Alexei Navalny taking into account our twelve-and-a-half years of experience in independent investigations of torture and murder in the Gulag of the 21st century.

'We ask you to postpone the funeral and do everything possible to conduct a comprehensive examination outside the Russian Federation and are ready to provide assistance and assistance in this… Please make the right choice.'

During the weekend, the Russian authorities U-turned to pass the body to Navalny's mother Lyudmila, 69.

She is now responsible for bringing the body to Moscow.

The group appealed to the US and EU to support the family in 'exposing this political murder' and to 'organise the evacuation of the body for a full comprehensive post-mortem examination'. - which boasts inside knowledge of Putin's penal system - said it had already provided details to Navalny's family of the 'tying, immobilisation, blocking of arms and legs and cold torture' to which Navalny was subjected.

Russian media outlets today suggested that a funeral for Navalny could be held in Moscow on 29 February - as Putin makes his biggest speech of the year.

Exiled journalist Bozhena Rynska said: 'The authorities will prevent a people's funeral'.

This refers to an equivalent of the funeral of nuclear physicist and human rights campaigner Andrei Sakharov in 1989 when mourners flocked to bid him farewell and honour his opposition to Soviet totalitarianism.

They would 'block off the area of any cemetery where a funeral is planned and, under various pretexts, prevent the crowd from entering, so as not to create the image of a people's funeral'.

She said: 'Now the presidential administration is discussing how to prevent a mass procession at the funeral of Alexei Navalny.'

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