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Live updates: Alexei Navalny, a critic of Putin, dies in prison

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has expressed his condolences following the reported death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny in prison at the age of 47. Navalny, a prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin known for his anti-corruption efforts and mass protests, passed away while serving a prison sentence.

Navalny’s imprisonment has been a major point of contention in US-Russia relations, with President Joe Biden warning Putin of severe consequences if Navalny were to die in custody. The White House was not informed in advance of Navalny’s death by the Russian government, according to a senior Biden administration official.

During the Munich Security Conference, Blinken squarely placed the blame for Navalny’s death on Putin and his government, highlighting years of persecution and imprisonment suffered by the opposition leader. He emphasized that Russia bears responsibility for the tragic outcome.

The death of Navalny has sparked outrage and condemnation from international leaders, with many calling for an independent investigation into the circumstances surrounding his passing. The incident serves as a stark reminder of the dangers faced by those who challenge the Putin regime in Russia. Navalny’s legacy as a fearless advocate for democracy and human rights will continue to inspire movements for change both within Russia and around the world.

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