CNN News Crew, Foreign NGO Head Detained In Russia Outside Navalny's Jail

CNN News Crew, Foreign NGO Head Detained in Russia Outside Navalny's Jail

Police detained several people gathered outside the prison in Russia's Vladimir Region where opposition figure Alexey Navalny is currently being held, including CNN's Senior International Correspondent Mathew Chance and his cameraperson, and the head of the Doctors' Alliance (recognized as a foreign agent in Russia) Anastasia Vasilieva

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 06th April, 2021) Police detained several people gathered outside the prison in Russia's Vladimir Region where opposition figure Alexey Navalny is currently being held, including CNN's Senior International Correspondent Mathew Chance and his cameraperson, and the head of the Doctors' Alliance (recognized as a foreign agent in Russia) Anastasia Vasilieva.

Vasilieva arrived at about 12:30 Moscow time (09:30 a.m. GMT), accompanied by several people in white coats. By that time, several dozen journalists from federal and regional media had already gathered at the site.

About two hours later, the police asked the crowd to disperse, as they were disrupting the work of the prison and blocking the passage of vehicles. Law enforcement officers also warned that failure to comply would lead to penalties.

Vasilieva did not comply and refused to clear the road, after which she was brought to the side of the road and put in a police vehicle.

The next to be detained was CNN correspondent Matthew Chance. Chance stated that they were the press and should be released, but failed to present their press passes to police when requested. Chance was also escorted to a police vehicle. Neither member of the CNN crew was wearing a vest with the word "Press" on it.

On March 31, Navalny, who is serving a prison sentence on charges of financial misconduct, declared a hunger strike, demanding that the prison administration provide him access to proper medical treatment. The opposition figure has complained about pain in his back and legs.

The Russian Federal Penitentiary Service stated that Navalny's health was assessed as stable and satisfactory by medical professionals and he has been receiving all necessary care.