Putin regime is 'built on corruption,' opposition leader Alexei Navalny says

Russia's best-known opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, has accused the regime of President Vladimir Putin of being "b...

Posted: Jan 28, 2018 4:03 AM
Updated: Jan 28, 2018 4:03 AM

Russia's best-known opposition leader, Alexei Navalny, has accused the regime of President Vladimir Putin of being "built on corruption" and called on the Kremlin to mend battered relations with the West.

As Russia braces for a day of nationwide anti-Kremlin rallies on Sunday, Navalny, who has been barred from standing in the March 18 presidential elections, claimed Putin was scared of opposition.

In an exclusive interview with CNN at his Moscow headquarters, he warned of growing impatience for political change. "Putin has been in power for 18 years now," Navalny said. "People are not ready to wait another six years, then another six, then another."

The 41-year-old anti-corruption campaigner said his supporters will take to the streets in more than 100 towns and cities across Russia on Sunday in a rare show of political defiance.

Navalny said people blamed the regime for their plight. "The Putin regime is built on corruption," he told CNN. "According to official data, over 20% of our population lives below the poverty line. And people link the obvious. Why are we so poor? Because they steal so much," he said, referring to Russia's ruling elite.

The Kremlin has rejected allegations of widespread high-level corruption and has condemned Navalny as a dangerous influence whose calls for protests could plunge Russia into chaos.

A 2017 criminal conviction for embezzlement means Navalny is blocked under Russian law from standing for public office. Critics say the case against him was politically motivated.

Navalny accused Putin of being afraid of opposition. "He is scared of all real competition. He only allows those to run who don't even resist, who don't even campaign," he said.

Vast chasm

But Navalny's confidence is not supported by Russian opinion polls.

Putin, who controls and dominates state media, regularly achieves popularity ratings close to 90%. Navalny, who gets hardly any attention in national media, polls barely 2%, illustrating the vast chasm the opposition figure would need to bridge even if he were allowed to stand against Putin.

Yet outside Russia, Navalny is viewed positively as a preferable alternative to hard-line Putin, who has led Russia into confrontation with the West.

Navalny insisted he would be capable of repairing that relationship.

Russia "needs to stop supporting the war in Ukraine (and) stop using shady methods of hybrid war like election interference and hacking," he said.

But he argued that it served Putin's interests to be cast as a bogeyman in the West. "From the Kremlin's point of view, and Putin's point of view, this is a good thing that keeps his image on the front pages of the Western media," Navalny told CNN. "But this is stupid. These are just further steps towards this country's degradation."

West Lafayette
Clear
78° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 80°
Kokomo
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 92° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 73°
Rensselaer
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 88° Lo: 66°
Feels Like: 68°
Fowler
Clear
68° wxIcon
Hi: 89° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 68°
Williamsport
Clear
75° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 70°
Feels Like: 75°
Crawfordsville
Clear
69° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 69°
Frankfort
Overcast
74° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 71°
Feels Like: 74°
Delphi
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 91° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 73°
Monticello
Clear
73° wxIcon
Hi: 95° Lo: 68°
Feels Like: 73°
Logansport
Clear
72° wxIcon
Hi: 90° Lo: 69°
Feels Like: 72°
WLFI Radar
WLFI Temps
WLFI Planner

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Confirmed Cases: 47432

Reported Deaths: 2687
CountyConfirmedDeaths
Marion11546683
Lake5104242
Elkhart321144
Allen2737129
St. Joseph190866
Cass16389
Hamilton1538100
Hendricks1390100
Johnson1256118
Porter72037
Tippecanoe6948
Madison65564
Clark64044
Bartholomew58244
Howard56557
LaPorte56326
Kosciusko5354
Vanderburgh5026
Marshall4823
Jackson4693
Noble46928
LaGrange4677
Hancock44035
Boone43743
Delaware43150
Shelby42325
Floyd37144
Morgan32731
Montgomery29320
Grant29126
Clinton2882
Monroe27628
Dubois2666
White26010
Henry25815
Decatur24932
Lawrence24225
Vigo2318
Dearborn22823
Harrison21222
Warrick21229
Greene18532
Miami1822
Jennings17411
Putnam1688
DeKalb1604
Scott1607
Daviess14216
Orange13623
Wayne1366
Steuben1282
Perry1279
Franklin1248
Ripley1157
Jasper1142
Wabash1122
Carroll1102
Fayette987
Newton9810
Starke923
Whitley905
Randolph784
Huntington742
Jefferson722
Wells711
Fulton691
Jay680
Washington681
Gibson672
Knox640
Pulaski641
Clay604
Rush563
Adams501
Benton480
Owen471
Sullivan441
Brown381
Posey380
Blackford372
Spencer371
Crawford300
Fountain302
Tipton301
Switzerland260
Martin220
Parke220
Ohio140
Vermillion140
Warren141
Union130
Pike100
Unassigned0193

COVID-19 Important links and resources

As the spread of COVID-19, or as it's more commonly known as the coronavirus continues, this page will serve as your one-stop for the resources you need to stay informed and to keep you and your family safe. CLICK HERE

Closings related to the prevention of the COVID-19 can be found on our Closings page.

Community Events