UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron has demanded that Russia clarify the whereabouts of opposition figure Vladimir Kara-Murza, who is currently incarcerated.
Since the Russian-British national was released from a Siberian prison after being found guilty of treason for opposing the war in Ukraine, there has been increased cause for concern.
Transfers between Russian prisons are confidential and may take several weeks.
According to Lord Cameron, Russia “must urgently” provide Kara-Murza’s attorneys with his whereabouts.
When inquiries were made to the Omsk correctional colony where he was being held, they were told he had left.
Lord Cameron wrote on X, the social media site that was formerly known as Twitter, “I’m deeply concerned for Mr. Kara-Murza – a British national imprisoned in Russia for speaking out against the invasion of Ukraine.”
Following his transfer “in an unknown direction” from a punishment cell in the penal colony where he had been detained since September 2023, the activist’s wife, Eugenia Kara-Murza, announced on Monday that she had learned of the development.
She reportedly alluded to two alleged assassination attempts in which her husband was poisoned and almost died. “There are no grounds for his transfer and that makes it even more frightening as my husband is in the hands of the same people who tried to kill him twice, in 2015 and 2017,” she said.
“I demand that the Russian government provide us with information about my husband’s whereabouts,” she continued.
“I stand with his wife,” the foreign secretary of Great Britain continued.
For disseminating “false” information about the Russian army and having ties to an “undesirable organization,” Mr. Kara-Murza was given a 25-year sentence in April.
The 42-year-old politician and former journalist refuted all of the allegations.
He had been criticizing the war in Ukraine and the government’s repression of dissent for years, having spent years speaking out against Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Additionally, he had been instrumental in getting Western governments to sanction Russian officials for corruption and violations of human rights.
He made the following statement in remarks that were uploaded online just before he was sentenced: “I know that the day will come when the darkness engulfing our country will clear.”
The British government denounced his sentence, calling Russia’s ambassador to London and announcing that it would consider taking steps to hold those responsible for his detention and “mistreatment” accountable.
Mr. Kara-Murza was dubbed “yet another target of the Russian government’s escalating campaign of repression” by the US State Department.
Mr. Kara-Murza, whose mother moved to the UK when he was a teenager, was granted British citizenship. His family is well-known for being Soviet dissidents.
After being imprisoned since 2021 on a number of charges that are largely believed to be politically motivated, Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was moved within the criminal justice system in December. During that time, there was no communication with his supporters outside of the system for almost three weeks.
- UK Foreign Secretary David Cameron has demanded Russia to provide information about the whereabouts of opposition figure Vladimir Kara-Murza.
- Kara-Murza, a British national, was released from a Siberian prison after being found guilty of treason for opposing the war in Ukraine.
- The transfer between Russian prisons is confidential and may take several weeks.
- The UK’s wife, Eugenia Kara-Murza, has announced the transfer and demanded information about her husband’s whereabouts.
- Kara-Murza was given a 25-year sentence in April for disseminating “false” information about the Russian army and having ties to an “undesirable organization.”
- The British government denounced his sentence and announced plans to hold those responsible for his detention and “mistreatment” accountable.
- The US State Department dubbed Kara-Murza “yet another target of the Russian government’s escalating campaign of repression.”
- Kara-Murza’s family is known for being Soviet dissidents.