Thursday, 2 Feb 2023

Russian doctors urge Putin to ‘stop abusing’ Alexei Navalny

Russia: Maria Pevchikh reveals Alexey Navalny is missing

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Writing to Putin, the doctors said: “The detention conditions and the appearance of Aleksei Navalny make us greatly concerned for his life and health. From the medical point of view, it is clear that Aleksei is not receiving sufficient medical help.”

Lawyers for Navalny say that he fell ill after sharing a cell with an imnate who had been “deliberately placed in the prison’s medical ward full of flu patients”.

Navalny has not always shared a cell, and claims he was recently put in solitary confinement for the 10th time in a year.

They added that Mr Navalny needs medication amid reports he is suffering from a fever, chills, and coughing fits and have requested that he be transferred from the penal colony where he is being held to hospital for treatment.

The formerly free rival to Putin is the leader fo the Russia of the Future paty, one which has continuously challenged Putin and exposed government corruption.

While a key figure in Russian politics, Mr Navalny began to receive national attention when he was poisoned in with a Novichok nerve agen in September 2020.

After recovering from the attack, which intelligence services say was carried out by agents of the Russian secret police, Nalvany recovered.

However, whilst he was recovering in Berlin, the Kremlin accused him of violating parole conditions.

Upon his return to Russia in January 2021, Mr Navalny was arrested on the basis of these accusations that had been imposed when he was convicted for alleged embezzlement in 2014.

Originally only meant to serve a two-and-a-half year sentence, this as increased by nine more years after he was accussed of embezzling funds from his own party, something Mr Navalny denies.

In a bid to try and convince Russia officials to grant him treatment, Mr Navalny’s wife, Yulia, has also urged Russian authorities to treat him before he dies.

In a post on Instagram she wrote: “Imagine that you are shut in a case measuring two by three metres. That they place a person with you who is already sick, so that your cold grows stronger, so that the flu is added on top of your cold.

“That they get you up at 6am and they keep you from lying down all day, even though you have a high temperature.”

Mr Navalny has been suffering from ill health in prison for a long time. In December he took to Twitter to say: “I have a problem with my spine. It is clear what one has to do to make the problem worse: keep me immobile as much as possible.

“If you lock a person up in a punishment cell, where he can either stand or sit on an iron stool for 16 hours a day, after a month in such conditions even a healthy person will undoubtedly get back pains. I’ve spent the last 3 months like this. Naturally, my back hurts a lot.” Mr Navalny has said he belives his captures are deliberately making him ill.

The fear now is that Mr Navalny will deteriorate further and potentially die in prison.

However, this is not a certainty and there is potential for Russian authorites to change their minds.

As Navalny’s physical health worsens, the political health of the man who put him there appears to be waining too.

Putin is coming under greater pressure as the war in Ukraine continues.

Rumours are even now beginning to swirl over whether he will see out the war.

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