Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny’s supporters had their homes and offices raided Thursday by Russian law enforcement just days after President Vladimir Putin’s ruling United Russia Party lost a third of its seats in the Moscow assembly, according to reports.
The operation involved more than 1,000 officers, 200 individual raids, and at least 39 towns and cities, The Guardian reports. The raids appear to be connected to Navalny’s money-laundering charges, which he has repeatedly said are politically motivated.
Navalny spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh told The Guardian the raids are “an act of intimidation and robbery” following the local and regional elections.
The opposition leader said in an online video that “It’s clear that only Putin himself could give the order for such a large-scale operation.”
“Putin is very angry and is stamping his feet,” Navalny said, according to Reuters. “I congratulate you. Today the biggest police operation is modern Russian history is taking place.”
“This is a case where the actions of the police are no different from those of burglars,” he added.
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