Alexei Navalny
Alexei NavalnyReuters

The United States government announced the imposition of sanctions against Russian officials over the 2020 poisoning of Alexei Navalny, a critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, White House officials told reporters Tuesday.

The sanctions target seven senior Russian officials and 14 entities involved in chemical production.

Navalny became violently during a flight from Tomsk to Moscow on August 20, 2020. He was later taken to Charité Hospital in Berlin, where doctors confirmed that he was poisoned with a cholinesterase inhibitor which the German government declared to be the Novichok nerve agent..

The Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) has been accused of involvement in the poisoning, a charge which the FSB and Russian government deny.

After his recovery, Navalny returned to Russia on January 17, 2021, and was arrested at passport control at Sheremetyevo International Airport in Moscow for violating parole for an earlier conviction by leaving Russia. On February 2, Navalny was sentenced to two and half years at a corrective labor colony.

US President Joe Biden and other world leaders have condemned the arrest of Navalny and have called for his immediate release.