Russia's Supreme Court head dies in Moscow

Vyacheslav Lebedev, who was chairman of Russia's Supreme Court since December 1991, died in Moscow on Feb. 23, Russian state-controlled media outlet Kommersant reported on Feb. 24.

Lebedev was 80 years old and died after a "prolonged illness."

"He participated in the work of the Supreme Court literally until his last day," Kommersant said, citing a source.

Lebedev was included on a Ukrainian sanctions list due to his role in Russia's leadership. He met with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow on Feb. 6 to discuss the work of the judicial system.

Lebedev was the Chairman of the Supreme Court of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic for two years before the breakup of the Soviet Union.

Russia's judiciary has long been controlled by the Kremlin, with the country's parliament rubber stamping a heap of oppressive legislation, while courts handing out politically motivated sentences.

According to OVD-Info, a human rights group, Russia has over 1,000 political prisoners, some of them are incarcerated for calling Russia's war against Ukraine as a "war" or liking and sharing an anti-war message.

Read also: Russia’s Supreme Court declares ‘LGBT movement’ an ‘extremist organization’

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