Mother of Alexei Navalny files complaint demanding Russian officials release son’s body News
© WikiMedia (Michał Siergiejevicz)
Mother of Alexei Navalny files complaint demanding Russian officials release son’s body

Alexei Navalny’s mother, Lyudmila Navalnaya, filed a lawsuit Wednesday in a Salekhard city court against Russian officials, contesting their refusal to release her son’s body.

This complaint followed previous attempts from Lyudmila Navalnaya and Navalny’s team of lawyers to retrieve the deceased activist’s body. After Navalny died Friday in an Arctic prison colony, his body was transferred to Salekhard so investigators could determine the cause of his death. Navalny’s mother and his team traveled to Salekhard to they could see the body, but they were informed that his body was not in Salekhard’s morgue, which aroused suspicion surrounding the circumstances of Navalny’s death. Navalny’s spokesperson accused Russian officials of murder and demanded the body be handed over to his family.

The Russian opposition leader’s mother addressed Russian President Vladimir Putin in a video on February 20 from the Arctic colony where her son died. She said, “His body has not been released to me. They don’t even tell me where he is,” and demanded the release of her son’s body so that he could be buried “decently.” The mother’s request was sent in writing to Putin’s office by Navalny’s team, but they were informed on Monday by investigators that Navalny’s body has to be retained for two more weeks for further examinations.

Navalny’s widow, Yulia Navalnaya, supported her mother-in-law’s request and accused Putin of murdering her husband. However, Russia’s federal prison service, when announcing Alexei Navalny’s death on February 16, declared that Navalny lost consciousness after having a walk, and despite the doctors’ efforts to resuscitate him, he passed away.

The consideration of Lyudmila Navalnaya’s case about “illegal actions and decisions” will occur on March 4 in a “closed court hearing,” according to a Salekhard city court.