WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Ben Cardin (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, released the following statement Tuesday regarding the assault on Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny and his colleagues and associates:
“I condemn Tuesday’s assault of prominent Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny and his colleagues and associates, which occurred in broad daylight in full view of Russian police. This is just the most recent attack on Russia’s embattled civil society, a group that is threatened and targeted for its work to advance political rights and civil liberties inside Russia.
“This assault is emblematic of the closing space for civil society, human rights, and media freedom in Russia. I encourage the Russian authorities to investigate this incident and hold accountable those who were responsible.
“I call on the Russian government to ensure that the political opposition is able to function without harassment in their daily work and campaign free from fear and intimidation in the lead up to nation’s parliamentary elections in September.”