Navalny wants to become mayor of Moscow, and on Wednesday he was approved as an official candidate for the election in September. As long as his conviction isn't final, he will remain an official candidate.
The trial doesn't seem to have accomplished the Kremlin's goal of discrediting Navalny as corrupt in the eyes of the Russian people. According to a poll by the Levada Center, 44 percent of Russians believe that Navalny's trial was an attempt to muzzle him. Another 13 percent believe it was an attempt to prevent his candidacy. Only 23 percent believe that the reason for the trial was actually misappropriation of funds.
Members of the international community reacted with outrage at the verdict on Thursday. "This outcome, given the procedural shortcomings, raises serious questions as to the state of the rule of law in Russia," said a spokesman for High Representative of the European Union Catherine Ashton. Michael McFaul, US ambassador to Russia, tweeted: "We are deeply disappointed by the conviction of Navalny and the apparent political motivations in this trial."
By Guylain Gustave Moke