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Pro-democracy Russian activist allowed lawyer access at prison hospital

A Moscow court in 2023 sentenced Vladimir Kara-Murza to 25 years in prison. Associated Press/Photo by Dmitry Serebryakov

Pro-democracy Russian activist allowed lawyer access at prison hospital

Evgenia Kara-Murza on Wednesday thanked people who had demanded lawyers be given access to her activist husband after he was transferred to a prison hospital. A lawyer who visited found him alive and well, she said.

She wrote on Tuesday that it had been over a week since Vladimir Kara-Murza’s lawyers last saw him. On July 4, Russian officials told the lawyers that he had been transferred to a prison hospital. The 42-year-old journalist is a critic of Russian leader Vladimir Putin and spoke out against him for years. Kara-Murza survived two poisonings in 2015 and 2017 that were later linked to Russia’s intelligence service. The same agency poisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny in 2018, nearly killing him. Navalny died in prison in February.

Why is he in prison? Russian authorities arrested Kara-Murza in 2022 and a court last year sentenced him to 25 years in prison on charges of treason for denouncing Russia’s war in Ukraine. He began serving his sentence at a Siberian prison camp in the city of Omsk, more than 1,200 miles from Moscow.

What has the international community said about his imprisonment? U.K. Foreign Secretary David Lammy on Wednesday called for Russia to release Kara-Murza on humanitarian grounds. The activist is a dual Russian and British citizen. The European Union last year said the trial did not meet international standards for a fair and public hearing by an impartial tribunal.

Dig deeper: Read Christina Grube’s report in The Sift on Biden’s acknowledgment of the first anniversary of Wall Street Journal correspondent Evan Gershkovich’s arrest and the warning he gave Putin.

Lauren Canterberry

Lauren Canterberry is a reporter for WORLD. She graduated from the World Journalism Institute and the University of Georgia with a degree in journalism, both in 2017. She worked as a local reporter in Texas and now lives in Georgia with her husband.

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