(Moscow) New criminal proceedings have been initiated by Russian justice against opponent Alexeï Navalny following an altercation in prison, his spokesperson announced on Tuesday, denouncing a “ provocation ” by the prison authorities.

“ A new criminal case has been launched against Alexeï Navalny ”, indicated Kira Iarmych on Twitter, explaining that the opponent, who is serving a nine-year prison sentence, risks an additional five years “ for disorganization of the activities of the penitentiary institution. “.

According to Ms. Iarmych and lawyer Vadim Kobzev, who also recounted the incident, the guards of the prison where Mr. Navalny is locked up placed, in his cell, during his absence, another prisoner who suffers from “problems of hygiene “.

However, according to the unspoken laws of the Russian prison system, widely followed by the detainees and well known to the guards themselves, Mr. Navalny should have used force in this situation to remove this other detainee from his cell, which the opponent refused to do.

“ He told the guards that he would not, because this convict was not to blame and the administration was using him as a tool ” to push the opponent to blame, explained Ms. Iarmych.

According to her, the guards then “kicked and dragged” Alexeï Navalny into the cell, after which the opponent “grabbed the other inmate by the collar” and pulled him towards the door.

“Right after that they surrounded Navalny, put him against the wall and the prison administration announced that a new criminal case had been launched against him,” Ms. Iarmych continued.

According to the spokesperson, this is the tenth criminal case currently brought against the anti-corruption activist, already imprisoned since 2021 after his return to Russia from convalescence in Germany following a poisoning of which he accuses the Kremlin.

“He already faces up to 35 years in prison, but that’s not enough for (Vladimir) Putin. He wants Alexey to stay in prison forever,” she said.

According to his collaborators, Mr. Navalny, 46, suffers in prison from an “unknown illness” and is left “without care”.