© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny and his wife Yulia attend a rally in support of independent candidates for elections to Moscow City Duma, the capital’s regional parliament, in Moscow, Russia July 20, 2019. REUTERS/Tatyana Makeyeva/
(Reuters) -Jailed Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny exchanged Valentine’s Day greetings with his wife Yulia via Instagram on Tuesday, saying it was nearly a year since he had been able to see her in person.
“Sometimes I myself wonder how my great love for you fits in an ordinary human heart. I talk to you all the time,” Navalny said, calling her by the loving diminutive “Yulyashka”.
Yulia responded by posting a photo of the couple embracing, accompanied by a heart emoji.
Navalny, who survived a poisoning attempt in 2020, is serving sentences totalling 11-1/2 years at a penal colony east of Moscow on charges including fraud and contempt of court.
Human rights groups and Western governments say he was the victim of trumped-up cases designed to silence his criticism of President Vladimir Putin.
He is able to post on social media via his lawyers and allies, who have voiced increasing concern for his health after repeated long spells in solitary confinement for trivial breaches of prison rules.
Russian authorities say Navalny is treated like any other prisoner.