Outrage and concern: Arrest of Kremlin spokesperson heightens concerns over Putin’s crackdown

Russian opposition politician and Washington Post donor Vladimir KaraMurza was arrested by Russian authorities in Moscow on Monday, hours after he called the Kremlin “not just corrupt” or “authoritarian” but a “regime of murderers” in a CNN interview – a development that has only gone increase concerns about the threat to speak out against Vladimir Poutine. “I think a lot of people are very worried about what’s going to happen next,” the CNN+ anchor said. Sara Sidnerwho conducted the interview, told CNN John Berman tuesday. Wednesday, CNN Brian Steeler asked Sidner if she felt guilty. “Of course. A little,” she replied. “I think it’s more nervousness because I know he was the one who revealed his whereabouts.”

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In his interview with CNN, Kara-Murza acknowledged the risk he was taking and knows Putin’s brutal tactics firsthand. His close friend and associate Boris Nemtsov, a former Russian deputy prime minister turned fierce critic of Putin, was shot dead in 2015, and Kara-Murza himself survived two poisonings, both of which put him in a coma, that he blamed on the Kremlin. While many dissidents fled Russia amid Putin’s latest crackdown on independent media, Kara-Murza was among the few who remained. And he continued to criticize Putin’s unprovoked invasion of Ukraine, despite facing up to 15 years in prison for doing so under the Kremlin’s draconian new law. “This is where I need to be,” Kara-Murza told MSNBC. Ali Velchi in an interview on Sunday. “We all know the price.”

Asked about the kinds of considerations CNN made before airing Kara-Murza’s interview, a CNN spokesperson pointed out. vanity lounge to Sidner’s comments on Tuesday and Wednesday. MSNBC did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

On Tuesday, a day after he was allegedly arrested outside his home for disobeying the police, the political activist and journalist was sentenced to 15 days in jail. The same day, the To post published an op-ed praising Kara-Murza’s willingness to speak out publicly against the Kremlin in columns for the To post and elsewhere, and called for his release. “What is abundantly clear is that Mr. Putin has once again put criticism in his sights, driving Russia deeper into totalitarianism, intolerant of free thought or dissent every day. “, wrote the editorial board. To post editor Fred Ryan also demanded Kara-Murza’s immediate release in a statement that called his detention the latest in Putin’s continued efforts to “hide the truth about the atrocities Putin is committing on behalf of the Russian people.”

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Kara-Murza’s detention also prompts contempt in Washington. Leaders of the Helsinki Commission, an agency that heard from Kara-Murza last month during its hearing on Putin’s ‘war on truth’, were ‘alarmed’ by Kara-Murza’s detention, according to a report. joint statement released by the senator. Ben CardinCo-President Rep. Steve Cohenand ranking members Sen. Roger Osier be p. Joe Wilson. “Vladimir is not a criminal but a true patriot driven by the potential for a democratic future for Russia and freedom for its people,” they wrote, demanding that he “be allowed to consult his lawyer and that ‘he be released immediately’. Authorities denied Kara-Murza access to a lawyer in violation of his constitutional rights, the commission’s press release said.

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