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Trump avoids condemning Putin over Navalny's death, instead slams Biden

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Washington DC | February 20, 2024 7:53:43 AM IST
Former US President Donald Trump broke his silence on the death of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny but avoided condemning Moscow or President Vladimir Putin in his cryptic post, CNN reported.

Trump drew comparisons between Navalny's mysterious death and his alleged "political persecution" and accused Joe Biden of "destroying" America.

The lack of a direct response from the GOP presidential frontrunner is likely to fuel fresh questions about how he would approach Russia in a potential second term, as it follows his comments earlier this month, that he would encourage the country to invade a NATO ally that was not spending enough on defence, as reported by CNN.

Notably, Trump faces 91 criminal charges but has pleaded not guilty to all charges, which span four separate cases against him.

Taking to his social media platform 'Truth Social', Trump said, "The sudden death of Alexei Navalny has made me more and more aware of what is happening in our Country. It is a slow, steady progression, with CROOKED, Radical Left Politicians, Prosecutors, and Judges leading us down a path to destruction."

"Open Borders, Rigged Elections, and Grossly Unfair Courtroom Decisions are DESTROYING AMERICA. WE ARE A NATION IN DECLINE, A FAILING NATION!" he added.

The news of Navalny's death, which happened while he was incarcerated in Russia, drew swift and forceful reactions from Western leaders, including President Joe Biden, who blamed Putin and said, "What has happened to Navalny is yet more proof of Putin's brutality."

The first time Trump mentioned Navalny's name in the wake of his death was when he shared a piece by the Tippinsights editorial board on Sunday with the headline "Biden:Trump::Putin:Navalny," claiming that there are some parallels between Navalny's treatment in Russia and that of Trump's in the US

On the other hand, former South Carolina Governor and Trump's last remaining major GOP rival, Nikki Haley has repeatedly called out Trump for avoiding addressing Navalny's death. Haley has called Navalny a "hero" and blamed Putin for his death.

"Trump needs to answer to that. Does he think Putin killed him? Does he think Putin was right to kill him? And does he think Navalny was a hero?" she told reporters Saturday at an event in South Carolina.

Notably, during his presidential tenure, Trump declined to join other world leaders in condemning Russia after Navalny was allegedly poisoned in 2020 with a Soviet-era chemical nerve agent 'Novichok'.

Trump has long expressed fondness and admiration for Putin and even sided with the Russian President over Moscow's alleged interference in the 2016 presidential election in a stunning rebuke of the US intelligence community, CNN reported. (ANI)

 
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