Russian protesters' email addresses leaked online, Navalny team says

April 16, 2021 10:50 AM EDT

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MOSCOW (Reuters) - The email addresses of participants in what allies of jailed Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny have said would be the biggest street protest in modern Russian history have been leaked online, the director of Navalny's foundation said on Friday.

Navalny, 44, was jailed last month for two and a half years on charges he called fabricated. He was arrested when he returned to Russia from Germany in January where he had been recovering from what doctors said was a nerve agent poisoning.

His arrest and jailing prompted his supporters to stage three protests during the winter despite the COVID-19 pandemic.

Last month, Navalny's allies launched a political campaign with its own "Free Navalny" website and said they would announce a date for a new nationwide street protest once more than 500,000 people had registered online to attend.

Ivan Zhdanov, director of Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation, said the email addresses of people who had registered to take part had appeared on the internet. He said the database contained nothing more than email addresses, with no names or other identifying features of its users.

"The worst thing these hackers could do is send you a nasty email that will most likely end up in your spam folder," Zhdanov said.

More than 440,000 people have registered to take part in the protest.

Navalny has organised nationwide anti-Kremlin street protests and carved out a following online with investigations alleging corruption by senior Russian officials.

(Reporting by Gabrielle T├ętrault-Farber; Editing by Nick Macfie)



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