The stalemate between Russian President Vladimir Putin and his main opponent Alexei Navalny reached a new level last week – as did Bitcoin donations to the dissident.
Navalny, a Russian politician and Putin’s vocal critic, is also a successful Bitcoin fundraiser in Russia 657 BTC in donations over the past five years. The pace of donations accelerated last week after Navalny was arrested in Moscow and his team released one Investigation report Description of an over the top, luxurious, 168 acre property with a palace believed to be Putin’s property.
Bitcoin donations are not widespread in Russia as only a handful of nonprofits raise money in crypto. Among these, Navalny’s fundraiser seems to be the most efficient, but even in this case, Bitcoin doesn’t make up more than 10% to 15% of all donations.
In the week since Navalny’s arrest, his wallet received nearly 3.7 BTC worth about $ 119,600 at press time, which is nearly three times what it was in the first two weeks of January. It’s also a lot more than the amount of donations the wallet received over the whole of 2020, Crypto News Outlet Protos calculated.
“Both bitcoin and fiat donations rose after the investigation was made public [Navalny’s] Arrest, and Bitcoin’s stake grew a little because of a couple [of] large donations, ”said Leonid Volkov, who coordinates the work of the Navalny volunteer network across Russia. One of those larger donations of a full bitcoin came from Evgeny Chichvarkin, a Russian, according to Volkov Millionaire in exile and Navalny’s friend. Chichvarkin hadn’t returned CoinDesk requests for comments at press time.
Tens of thousands of Russians have taken to the streets to protest Navalny’s arrest the largest protest rally in almost a decade in the country. Over 3,000 people had been arrested as of Saturday, January 23.
Under current Russian law, all street rallies must be approved by the authorities. As a result, almost none are ever authorized. In recent years, a number of protesters have been arrested and detained for peaceful protests, which prevented many Russians from participating in such activities until the January 23 rallies.
Support for Navalny, as well as public outrage over his treatment by the Russian authorities, has increased since he returned from Germany, where he spent several months Recovery after poisoning with a military grade nerve agent, Novichok.
Shortly after he woke up from a medically-related coma in Berlin’s Charite Clinic, Navalny’s team, along with Bellingcat and CNN, published one detection Mention of the Russian FSB officers (secret service) who allegedly arranged the poisoning.
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Navalny also announced that he will return to Russia after his recovery. The Russian Prison Inspectorate then demanded that Navalny be lifted and sent to prison on a 2015 criminal case overturned by the European Court of Human Rights in 2017.
On his return trip to Moscow, Navalny was followed by several news agencies broadcasting his trip minute by minute as the plane left Berlin and flew to Moscow on Sunday January 17th. After landing at Sheremetyevo Airport, Navalny reached the passport control area and was arrested there. After a trial in a police station that did not allow independent journalists, Navalny called for street protests.
Navalny was sentenced to 30 days in prison. Volkov announced New protests will be held on January 31 and February 2.