Russia Issues Travel Ban To Seven Britons In Response To U.K. Sanctions
December 17, 2021
Russia has imposed a travel ban on seven unnamed British citizens in a tit-for-tat response to London's sanctions connected to the August 2020 poisoning of Russian opposition politician Aleksei Navalny.
The Russian Foreign Ministry on December 17 said the targeted Britons were "closely involved in anti-Russian activities."
The move was a response to an entry ban that London imposed on seven purported Federal Security Service (FSB) operatives who were allegedly connected to the attack on Navalny.
The Russian Foreign Ministry statement denounced those allegations as "far-fetched and absurd pretexts."
Navalny fell violently ill while on a flight from Siberia to Moscow on August 20, 2020. He was later medically evacuated to Germany where specialists detected a nerve agent from the Novichok group.
It was a toxin from same group of Soviet-developed nerve agents that was used in a 2018 assassination attempt against former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in the English city of Salisbury. London has asserted that Russian agents carried out that attack.
Moscow denies any involvement in the assassination attempts against Skripal or Navalny.
After months of treatment in Germany, Navalny returned to Russia in January, where he was immediately arrested. In February, he was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in prison for allegedly violating the terms of his parole on a previous conviction that he denounced as politically motivated.
Based on reporting by Reuters, AFP, and dpa
Copyright (c) 2021. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.
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