Mysterious Circumstances Surround Alexei Navalny's Death in Detention, Insider Claims

Written by Henrik Rothen

Feb.18 - 2024 6:23 PM CET

Photo: Gregory Stein /
Photo: Gregory Stein /
Mysterious Circumstances Surround Alexei Navalny's Death in Detention, Insider Claims.

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An inmate from the IK-3 "Polar Wolf" colony, speaking anonymously to "Novaya Gazeta Europe," suggested that Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny may have died earlier than the Federal Penitentiary Service announced. The source described unusual activity in the colony starting the evening of February 15, with an expedited evening roll call and heightened security measures, including the locking of inmates in barracks and increased guard presence.

According to the inmate, the morning of February 16 began with a thorough search, where several cell phones, cards, and even electric kettles, previously overlooked by staff, were confiscated. This led to speculation among the inmates that an inspection was imminent, although typically the administration would have advance notice of such checks.

The death of Alexei Navalny was revealed to the colony's inmates around 10 a.m. Moscow time. Notably, there was no ambulance presence near the solitary cell where Navalny was held until after his death was announced. The inmate expressed skepticism about the timing of Navalny's death, suggesting it occurred the previous evening, given the lockdown and subsequent search.

The source also observed a noticeable shock among the colony's leadership following the announcement of Navalny's death. Later that day, vehicles from various locations, including the IK-18 "Polar Owl" colony and the nearest towns, arrived at the administration, presumably to coordinate a response ahead of a commission from Moscow.

The arrival of the commission from the Federal Penitentiary Service's central office coincided with the announcement of Navalny's death, further suggesting to the inmate that Navalny had died earlier than officially stated.

Official reports from the Federal Penitentiary Service stated Navalny felt unwell after a walk on February 16, lost consciousness, and could not be revived, with emergency services confirming his death. However, Baza reported Navalny became ill around noon local time, and despite medical efforts, he died at 2:17 p.m. local time.

Two high-ranking sources within the Investigative Committee told Sota that Navalny had been slowly poisoned in detention since August, allegedly orchestrated by the head of the Investigative Committee, Alexander Bastrykin, due to personal animosity stemming from Navalny's investigations.

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