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Russia Seeks Arrest of Two More Navalny Lawyers

Alexei Navalny’s wife Yulia Navalnaya (L) and lawyer Olga Mikhailova. Mikhail Pochuyev / TASS

Updated to add Fedulov's addition to the wanted list.

Russian authorities are seeking the arrest of two more lawyers of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, months after three other former and current Navalny lawyers were detained.

The Interior Ministry added Olga Mikhailova to its wanted list without specifying the crime that she is accused of committing, the independent news website Mediazona reported Friday.

The independent Novaya Gazeta Europa news outlet reported later Friday that another Navalny lawyer, Alexander Fedulov, was placed on the wanted list.

Mikhailova has said she was vacationing in Jordan when three other Navalny lawyers were detained in October and chose to stay abroad following their arrests.

“I hope to be more useful free than in a [prison] colony,” she wrote on Facebook last month.

Mikhailova said at the time she and fellow Navalny lawyers Vadim Kobzev, Alexei Lipster and Igor Sergunin were accused of participating in “extremist” activities for passing on his letters from prison to associates.

“[The accusers are] top-class masters at connecting insane nonsense and fictitious extremism,” Mikhailova wrote.

Fedulov also fled Russia following Kobzev, Lipster and Sergunin's arrests.

Navalny is serving a 19-year sentence in a remote Arctic prison colony on charges of creating an “extremist” organization. 

The opposition figure and his allies dismiss the charges as politically motivated and accuse the authorities of trying to further isolate him by arresting his lawyers.

Russia banned Navalny's political and activist groups as “extremist” organizations in June 2021, after his arrest upon returning to Moscow following a near-fatal poisoning sparked nationwide protests.

Mikhailova says she has represented Navalny in high-profile court cases for 16 years.

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