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Alexey Navalny honored by Bono and U2 during Las Vegas concert


By Alli Rosenbloom, CNN

(CNN) — Bono and U2 got their audience involved in a tribute to late Russian opposition leader Alexey Navalny during their concert at Las Vegas’s Sphere over the weekend.

Speaking to the crowd on Saturday, according to audience video, Bono spoke about the upcoming two-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and acknowledged the millions of people affected by the ongoing conflict.

“For these people, freedom is not just a word in a song. For these people, freedom is the most important word in the world – so important that Ukrainians are fighting and dying for it. And so important that Alexey Navalny chose to give his up,” Bono said.

Navalny, an outspoken critic of the Kremlin whose 2020 poisoning with a nerve agent made global headlines, was reported dead on Friday by the Russian prison service. He was 47.

He died after becoming unwell and falling unconscious while on a walk in the Siberian prison he was being held at, according to the Russian prison service.

“Apparently, Putin would never, ever say his name so I felt tonight, the free people from here – people who believe in freedom – we must say his name,” Bono said.

Bono then led a chant of Navalny’s name that the audience joined in on. The band then began to play a cover of Crowded House’s “Don’t Dream It’s Over.”

The band has been supportive of the Ukrainian people.

In addition to raising funds, Bono and U2 guitarist, The Edge, gave a performance at the Khreschatyk metro station in Kyiv in May 2022 on the invitation of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

™ & © 2024 Cable News Network, Inc., a Warner Bros. Discovery Company. All rights reserved.

CNN’s Sophie Tanno and Darya Tarasova contributed to this report.

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