Friday, 16 April, 2021

Navalny's doctors arrested outside Russian prison

Alexei Navalny 'is losing all feeling in both hands' as he keeps up hunger strike Lawyer: Russian opposition leader Navalny has spinal hernias
Gustavo Carr | 08 April, 2021, 11:41

Navalny, 44, is Russian President Vladimir Putin's fiercest domestic opponent. Still, labs in Germany and elsewhere in Europe confirmed that Navalny was poisoned with the Soviet-era Novichok nerve agent.

He was later sentenced to 2½ years in prison for breaching parole conditions in a 2014 fraud case, partly because he failed to report to authorities while under treatment in Germany. Navalny has rejected the conviction as fabricated, and the European?ourt of Human Rights found it "arbitrary and manifestly unreasonable".

Police officers guard an entrance of the prison colony IK-2, east of Moscow on April 6.

In an Instagram post, Navalny said prison authorities were trying to undermine his hunger strike by roasting chicken near him and placing candies in the pockets of his clothes.

A lawyer for imprisoned Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who has complained of serious back and leg pain in custody, said Wednesday that doctors have found him to be suffering from two spinal hernias.

Reuters reported that Anastasiya Vasilyeva, who is an ally of Navalny and leads a doctors' union, was detained after she was turned away from the prison, where she said she had an appointment with a senior prison official and that she wanted to see Navalny to check on his health. The facility in the town of Pokrov stands out among Russian penitentiaries for its especially strict inmate routines, which include standing at attention for hours.

Alexei Navalny 'is losing all feeling in both hands' as he keeps up hunger strike
Russian police detain supporters of Kremlin critic Navalny, including his doctor

Amnesty International is weighing in on Alexei Navalny's prison conditions, and it isn't pulling punches.

Navalny sits in a Moscow court as his lawyer Olga Mikhailova, left, reads documents in this photo from July 24, 2019.

The pro-Kremlin newspaper Izvestia later cited the state prison service as saying Navalny had been moved to a sick bay and tested for COVID-19.

The Kremlin declined comment on Navalny's health but said he would receive medical care like any other prisoner if ill.

His temperature was oscillating and had fallen to 37C (98.6F) on Wednesday after reaching 39C (102F) on Monday, according to the lawyer, who said Navalny was losing 1kg (2lbs) a day due to a hunger strike.

On Monday, he said as many as three people from his unit had been taken to hospital with tuberculosis recently, a claim the Russian prison service denied. She said some 2,000 doctors had already signed an open letter demanding Navalny be examined by specialists he trusts, including from the German clinic that treated him after his poisoning.

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