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Russian court asked to restrict Navalny spokesperson’s freedom for two years – Metro US

Russian court asked to restrict Navalny spokesperson’s freedom for two years

FILE PHOTO: Kira Yarmysh, spokeswoman of Russian opposition leader Alexei
FILE PHOTO: Kira Yarmysh, spokeswoman of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, waits outside a hospital in Omsk

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russian prosecutors have asked a court to put restrictions on Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny’s spokesperson Kira Yarmysh, who is currently held under house arrest pending trial, for two years, her Twitter account said on Thursday.

Russia has cracked down on the opposition ahead of parliamentary elections in September. Most of Navalny’s prominent allies have either left Russia or are facing prosecution.

“The prosecutor’s office requests that Kira be granted with 2 years of restricted freedom … and that she remains under house arrest until the sentence enters into force,” a post in Yarmysh’s Twitter account said on Thursday.

The Russian Prosecutor General’s office did not immediately reply to a Reuters’ request for comment.

The court’s verdict is expected on August 16, another post in Yarmysh’s Twitter account said.

Veronika Polyakova, Yarmysh’s lawyer, said on Twitter that the prosecutors want to prohibit Yarmysh of leaving home between 22:00 and 06:00, leaving Moscow and changing the place of residence.

Yarmysh has been under house arrest since February accused of breaching COVID-19 safety regulations at what the authorities said was an unauthorised protest in support of Navalny, a charge she says is politically-motivated.

The 31-year-old has been Navalny’s spokesperson since 2014.

Navalny, a critic of President Vladimir Putin, is himself serving a 2-1/2 year jail term for parole violations related to an embezzlement conviction he says was trumped up

(Reporting by Anton Zverev; writing by Polina Devitt; Editing by Alistair Bell)

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