ontario news watch

Canada sanctions 13 more Russians for role in Navalny’s imprisonment and death

OTTAWA — Canada is sanctioning 13 more Russians from the intelligence service, police force and corrections system for their role in the poisoning, imprisonment and death of opposition leader Alexei Navalny.

The new sanctions come as Navalny’s widow, Yulia Navalnaya, is in Ottawa for meetings with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Foreign Affairs Minister Mélanie Joly.

Navalnaya has pledged to continue her late husband’s anticorruption work.

Joly will tell Navalnaya that Canada holds the Kremlin “fully responsible” for her husband’s death.

Navalny died Feb. 16 at a Russian penal colony where he was serving a 19-year sentence for what Canada considers trumped up charges designed to silence an opposition politician causing problems for President Vladimir Putin.

Canada sanctioned six Russians within two weeks of Navalny’s death including the head of the “Polar Wolf” penal colony where he died, a judge and a prosecutor.

The thirteen names being added include senior officials with the Russian intelligence service and the police force.

Joly says the sanctions target not only those involved in Navalny’s death, but also the nerve agent poisoning that nearly killed him in 2020, his illegal arrest upon returning to Russia in 2021, human rights violations while he was imprisoned, the failure to investigate the cause of his death and a delay in handing over his remains to his family.

His body was given to his mother on Feb. 24, and he was buried March 1 in Moscow. Police detained hundreds of people who tried to lay flowers in his memory.

Russia has denied any involvement in Navalny’s death, saying he collapsed while out for a walk at the prison and could not be revived.

During a visit to Ukraine about a week after Navalny died, Trudeau said Putin had Navalny executed because Putin is weak and too scared to face a real opponent.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published June 18, 2024.

The Canadian Press