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Supporters of late Alexei Navalny gather at gravesite to pay homage


Moscow: In a significant demonstration of support, hundreds of supporters of the late Russian opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, gathered at his gravesite to lay flowers and pay tribute.

The event marked two weeks since Navalny's death in an Arctic prison colony.

The display of affection for Navalny, a prominent anti-corruption campaigner and staunch opponent of President Vladimir Putin, comes just ahead of the upcoming election where Putin is expected to secure another six-year term with no real competition.

Queues formed outside the Borisovo cemetery in southern Moscow, where Navalny was laid to rest, for the third consecutive day. Mourners expressed the depth of their loss and appreciation for Navalny's contributions to the country.

Despite the Kremlin warning of potential arrests for violating anti-protest laws, thousands attended Navalny's funeral service and burial.

Reflecting on the gathering, Alexander, a 29-year-old engineer, told AFP, "It's a sign that people are feeling the extent of the loss, the scale of the person, they feel exactly what this person did for the country." The atmosphere at the cemetery was a mix of emotions, including anger, grief, hope, and despair.

Amid a crackdown on dissent in Russia, particularly following the military offensive in Ukraine, police maintained a presence at the cemetery, though no mass arrests were reported. Mourners, laying flowers and expressing their love for Navalny, viewed the gathering as a form of voting, given the lack of genuine opposition candidates in the upcoming election.

Navalny's death has stirred accusations against the Kremlin, with Navalny's allies alleging foul play. Western leaders have held Putin accountable for Navalny's demise. Despite the intense political climate, supporters continue to gather, with many expressing a determination to carry on Navalny's legacy and not give in to despair.

The Russian political landscape has seen a notable absence of opposition figures, with many facing imprisonment, exile, or death during Putin's extended rule. Navalny's death has intensified scrutiny on the Kremlin, leading to calls for accountability and justice.

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TAGS:MoscowPutinKremlinAlexei NavalnyAlexei Navalny DeathAlexei Navalny Gravesite
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