EFEStrasbourg, France

Jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was awarded the 2021 Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought by the European Parliament on Wednesday.

David Sassoli, EP president, said: “He has fought tirelessly against the corruption of Vladimir Putin's regime. This cost him his liberty and nearly his life. Today's prize recognises his immense bravery and we reiterate our call for his immediate release.”

Russia’s leading critic of Putin narrowly survived a Novichok nerve agent poisoning while campaigning in Siberia in August 2020, which he claims was carried out with the blessing of the Kremlin.