Poking the Bear

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Poking the Bear




Alexei Navalny, an anti-corruption campaigner and avowed democrat. President and ruthless strong man Vladimir Putin. In this epic tale of power and brinkmanship, corruption and courage, these two men are locked in a battle of the titans over the future of Russia, the world’s largest country.

Navalny has been poisoned, almost blinded, arrested and jailed but he’s not cowed. He wants to force out President Putin and he’s risking his life to do it. Six months ago, he lay on his death bed in a German hospital, poisoned by a nerve agent, a substance made by the Soviet military. Down but not out, Navalny recovered and on a crazy-brave mission, returned to Russia to keep fighting.

As Navalny was arrested and hauled off to prison, his team upped the stakes, releasing a film documenting the existence of a one and a half billion-dollar palace which they say belongs to Putin.
As people across Russia rise up to protest against Putin and his excesses, Navalny’s inner circle are directing operations outside the country. ‘The ultimate victory for us would be Russia without Vladimir Putin…because we understand that absolutely the majority of our problems…they come from him personally’, says Maria Pevchikh, who heads up Navalny’s investigations unit.

In this exclusive report speaks to Navalny’s key advisors to find out what motivates their leader and what their next steps will be. While the struggle for a change of power continues the ordinary people of Moscow are braving freezing temperatures and police to voice their opposition to government corruption.

A Foreign Correspondent story


Foreign Correspondent
Australian Broadcasting Corporation