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Baryshnikov honors ‘insanely brave’ Putin opponent Navalny


NEW YORK (AP) — Ballet dancer, choreographer and actor Mikhail Baryshnikov, who famously defected from the Soviet Union nearly a half-century ago, has warmly praised jailed Russian opposition leader. Baryshnikov hailed Alexei Navalny as “insanely brave” as a human rights group awarded him its annual prize. The New York-based Train Foundation gave its 2022 “Civil Courage Prize” to Navalny in absentia, at New York University on Monday night. Baryshnikov said Navalny’s mission is to “champion a more democratic vision for Russia.” Baryshnikov defected to Canada in 1974 while on a tour with the Soviet state ballet and moved to the United States a year later. The Train Foundation cited Navalny’s “groundbreaking work for freedom and transparency in Russia” in presenting the award.

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