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Moscow metro workers fired for their alleged support of opposition Alexei Navalni

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About a hundred workers in the Moscow metro, the Russian capital, were fired after the names of half a million followers of the influential opponent Alexei Navalni, who is imprisoned, were leaked.

Vasili Sheliakov, deputy director of the metro union, indicated that the workers linked his dismissal to the leak of a series of emails with such information.

Navalni’s team had obtained the names and addresses of those affected during an online campaign to organize protests against the government. Thus, they accused a worker of leaking said data.

“Many people who have been fired have not yet come forward to the union,” said Sheliakov, who warned that the number of dismissed could rise to 200.

The list is scheduled to be updated on Monday after a union meeting, according to the Dozhd television network. The union plans to denounce the subway, either individually or collectively.

Thus, he pointed out that the dismissals ceased due to the attention received by the media. The Moscow metro has about 60,600 workers.

The Russian authorities are seeking to outlaw the Navalni movement, which has been spreading reports of alleged corruption among high-ranking government officials for years.

Navalni, 44, is serving a two-and-a-half-year prison sentence for violating the terms of probation while in Germany recovering from poisoning.

This same Monday, the Russian Justice postponed the trial on the alleged illegality of the Russian opposition organizations, which the Government sees as “extremists”.

Last April, the Russian police searched several places linked to the jailed opposition leader and arrested several of his followers, before the planned protests in favor of the activist.

Many Russians risk losing their jobs for supporting Navalni. That was the case of a teacher when he was unceremoniously fired on February 9, after having participated in demonstrations in support of Navalni in Siberia.

The unauthorized protests organized since the end of January in favor of Nalvani, a staunch enemy of the Kremlin, were harshly repressed and there were more than 11,000 arrests, fines, brief incarcerations and some 100 criminal cases were also opened before the courts, which could lead to important convictions.

(with EP information)

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