UPDATE - Journalists Let Inside Moscow Court As Hearing On Navalny's Slander Case About To Begin

UPDATE - Journalists Let Inside Moscow Court as Hearing on Navalny's Slander Case About to Begin

MOSCOW (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 12th February, 2021) Journalists are being let inside the Moscow court where a hearing on jailed Russian opposition activist Alexey Navalny, who is accused of slandering a World War II veteran, is about to begin, a Sputnik correspondent reports from the scene.

The hearing is scheduled to start at 10.00 a.m. Moscow time. Security measures have been beefed up near the court building, with additional police and the National Guard units being deployed to the area.

So far, the situation remains calm, according to the correspondent.

According to the correspondent, reporters from more than 10 foreign media outlets were accredited to the hearing, including The New York Times, The Daily Telegraph, Financial Times, Der Spiegel, Belsat, France Televisions, Czech Radio, and The Asahi Shimbun.

Foreign diplomats are also gathering at the court, with the representatives of the embassies of the Baltic states being the first to arrive. Latvia's representative refused to provide any comment to reporters.

The previous hearing last week was attended by UK and French diplomats.

Navalny is facing slander charges for describing as "traitors" the people who starred in the last year's video in support of amendments to the Russian Constitution, among them the WWII veteran, Ignat Artyomenko.

The activist does not plead guilty. He is facing fine or penal labor.

Earlier this month, the Simonovsky Court in Moscow rescinded Navalny's suspended sentence in the 2014 Yves Rocher fraud case over multiple probation breaches and replaced it with 3.5 years in prison.