Alexei Navalny, Russia’s most prominent opposition leader and an outspoken critic of President Vladimir Putin, missed another court date on Monday. His allies have not heard from him in six days, Navalny’s spokeswoman posted on X.
At the beginning of the week, Navalny was scheduled to appear via video in a district court in the city of Kovrov, but he never appeared. This was the second court date Navalny missed after failing to appear for one last Thursday.
His spokeswoman, Kira Yarmysh, also said that Navalny’s team has not heard from him since last Tuesday. According to the New York Times, authorities have been reportedly blaming problems with electricity for Navalny’s absence. However, his supporters believe there are other factors contributing to his absence.
On both Friday and Monday, Navalny’s lawyers tried to get in contact with IK-6 and IK-7, two prisons in the Vladimir region where Navalny might be. They were informed on Monday that Navalny wasn’t in either facility. Navalny’s whereabouts remain unknown.
“They are just mocking us,” Yarmysh wrote on X.
Navalny is the director behind the documentary “Putin’s Palace: History of World’s Largest Bribe.” The film was released in 2021 and accuses Putin of a corruption scheme involving the building of the palace.
In 2020, Navalny was hospitalized after being poisoned by a lethal Novichok nerve agent, which he blamed on Putin. He fled to Berlin at the time to recover. But when he returned to Russia, Navalny was detained due to accusations he had violated his parole by going to Germany as Navalny was found guilty of fraud in 2014. In February of 2021, he was given a prison sentence of over two and a half years. That was then expanded to an additional nine years in 2022 after he was found guilty of embezzlement as well as an additional 19 years in 2023, based on on extremism charges.