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Number of Those Who Believe Navalny Trial Apolitical Rising, Poll Says

The Levada Center has released a poll showing that as more Russians learn of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, more of them believe he is being prosecuted for wrongdoing and not as retribution for his activism.

The poll, conducted from July 18 to 22 and published Friday, showed that 21 percent of people asked did not know who Navalny was.

Sixteen percent had never heard of the KirovLes trial, in which Navalny was convicted last week. Twenty-seven percent said they had heard of the case, while 31 percent said they had heard of it, but did not know what it was about.

Of those who said they had heard of the case, 46 percent said they believed the court case was connected to Navalny's public activities as a whistle-blower. In June, that figure was 47 percent, down from 54 percent in May.

In contrast, the proportion of those who had already heard of Navalny and who said the case had been opened because he broke the law while working as an adviser to the governor of the Kirov Region grew to 32 percent, from 28 percent in June.

The poll was conducted among 1,601 adults in 45 regions of the country. The margin of error did not exceed 3.4 percent.

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