Navalny's doctor says the Putin critic 'could die at any moment'

Cornelia Mascio
Aprile 18, 2021

Physician Yaroslav Ashikhmin said that test results he received from the 44-year-old's family show him with sharply elevated levels of potassium, which can bring on cardiac arrest, and heightened creatinine levels that indicate impaired kidneys.

Last week, Russian Foreign Ministry's spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, said that the United States is making up "stories" about Navalny's detention conditions while the U.S. itself continues to violate the rights of prisoners.

Asked about Mr Navalny's worsening condition, US President Joe Biden told reporters: "It's totally totally unfair and totally inappropriate".

Mr Navalny was ordered to serve two-ad-a-half years in prison on the grounds that his long recovery in Germany violated a suspended sentence he had been given for a fraud conviction in a case that he says was politically motivated.

Navalny's personal doctor Anastasia Vasilyeva and three more doctors, including a cardiologist, have asked prison officials to grant them immediate access.

He was arrested at the border as he returned to Russian Federation from Germany where he had been recovering from a nerve agent poisoning.

Alexei Navalny survived a poisoning a year ago.

'Fatal arrhythmia can develop any minute'.

They said he had to be examined immediately "taking into account the blood tests and his recent poisoning".

Navalny's spokeswoman Kira Yarmysh, who accompanied him when he collapsed on a plane after the poisoning in August, said the situation was critical again.

"Our patient could die at any moment", he said in a Facebook post.

Figures including author J.K. Rowling, actors Benedict Cumberbatch and David Duchovny called on Putin to offer Navalny, who is now on a hunger strike, immediate medical treatment.

Navalny's allies said they would set a date for the protest once 500,000 supporters had registered with a website.

About 80 famous writers, actors, historians, journalists and directors, including authors JK Rowling and Salman Rushdie, wrote an open letter to Mr Putin on Friday, urging him to ensure Mr Navalny gets the urgent medical care he needs.

His wife Yulia, who visited him earlier this week in prison, confirmed that he now weighs 76 kilograms, nine kilograms less than he was at the start of his hunger strike.

'The darkest times are beginning for free-thinking people, for civil society in Russian Federation, ' said Leonid Volkov, the head of Navalny's regional offices.

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