Former head of Navalny’s headquarters in Ufa is sent to pre-trial detention facility for two months

On 10 November, Lilia Chanysheva, the former head of Alexey Navalny’s headquarters in Ufa, was sent to pre-trial detention for two months on a case of establishing an “extremist society”. The case is being investigated against Navalny, as well as his associates and aides. Prior to this, Lilia Chanysheva and several other former staff members in Kemerovo Region and Bashkiria had been searched. Some of them were detained, but later released after interrogation. Only Lilia Chanysheva was not released.

Lilia Chanyshva is the first person to be arrested according to the “extremist” case, which was launched after the destruction of Navalny’s structures in 2021. The article on “establishing an extremist society” provides for up to 10 years in prison. The investigator insisted on placing Lilia in custody on the grounds that she might leave Russia and hide from the authorities. In their turn, the lawyers asked to limit their request to house arrest. Lawyer Vladimir Voronin commented on his Twitter account:

The court “deliberated” for 20 minutes, but came out with an order on several pages. Lilia @LChanysheva is sent into custody for two months, until 09.01.2022. The court decision will be appealed by the defence.

Chanysheva told during the court hearing that she was assuming she was pregnant at an early stage. We are talking about only 14 days of pregnancy. Almaz Gatin – Lilia’s husband – confirmed that they had recently been preparing for the birth of their first child.

Lilia Chanysheva

Until 2017, Lilia Chanysheva worked as an auditor and was not involved in politics. In 2017, she left her career as an auditor and became head of Alexey Navalny’s headquarters in Ufa. Her colleagues speak very positively of her. Leonid Volkov, the former head of Navalny’s headquarters network, called Lilia “a threat of local crooks”. He noted that under her leadership, the headquarters in Ufa has become “one of the strongest” in Russia. In turn, Ivan Zhdanov – former director of the Anti-Corruption Foundation – considers Lilia Chanysheva to be “a bright regional politician” and is sure that her prosecution is nothing more than “revenge of local officials and actions coordinated with the presidential administration”.

Lilia’s husband notes that Lilia has not worked at Navalny’s headquarters since spring 2021. We recall that it was in April 2021 that the Prosecutor’s Office suspended all Alexey Navalny’s headquarters pending a court ruling on an extremism lawsuit. However, Leonid Volkov announced shortly thereafter that he was closing down the network of headquarters, explaining that it was becoming impossible to continue their work as this was fraught with criminal prosecution of their staff.



Photos: Daria Kucherenko, @LChanysheva/Twitter, teamchanysheva/Facebook