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Secretary General meets Yulia Navalnaya

Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić has met Yulia Navalnaya, the widow of Alexei Navalnyy.

While expressing condolences and deep sadness for the loss of the prominent Russian opposition leader, the Secretary General underlined how Mr Navalnyy’s death cannot be separated from the grave human rights violations that he faced. This included an un-investigated poisoning attempt, a string of politically motivated cases and unjust imprisonment in conditions that amounted to degrading and inhuman treatment, for which the Russian authorities are fully responsible. The Secretary General also noted precedents in the case-law of the European Court of Human Rights in which close relatives or heirs, under certain conditions, continued pending cases following the death of the original applicants. 

Marija Pejčinović Burić recalled that the Russian Federation remains under an unconditional international legal obligation to implement the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights, including those rendered in respect of Mr Navalnyy.

Resulting from such an obligation, as well as from its status as a Party to the European Convention for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, the Russian Federation must ensure an effective investigation into Mr Navalnyy’s death in detention, the Secretary General reiterated.

Marija Pejčinović Burić deplored the unprecedented crackdown against civil society and human rights defenders in the Russian Federation. In this context, she commended Mr Navalnyy’s bravery to strive for a free and democratic Russia, as well as Yulia Navalnaya’s determination to continue her husband’s legacy. 

Secretary General Strasbourg 28 February 2024
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