PARIS, May 9. /TASS/. Western politicians tend to overestimate Russian Alexey Navalny’s role as an opposition leader, Thierry Mariani, a French member of the European Parliament, said on Sunday.
"Navalny’s role as an opposition politician is overestimated. He was sentenced in Russia for economic crimes," he said in an interview with the Europe 1 radio station. "I can hardly understand this campaign against Russia. It is no enemy for us."
Navalny, who received suspended sentences for embezzlement twice, was wanted in Russia for repeated violations of conditions of his conviction in the Yves Rocher case. On January 17, 2021 he was detained at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport upon arrival from Berlin, where he had undergone medical treatment. On February 2, Moscow’s Simonovsky Court replaced Navalny’s three-and-a-half-year suspended sentence with real jail time due to multiple probation violations. Navalny is serving his sentence in penal colony number 2 in the Vladimir region.