October 20, 2021

Ukraine Breaking News

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Aleksei Navalny, leader of the Russian opposition, puts an end to the hunger strike

Aleksei Navalny, leader of the Russian opposition, puts an end to the hunger strike

MOSCOW – Aleksei A. Navalny, the jailed Russian opposition leader, announced Friday that he had ended a hunger strike of more than three weeks on the recommendation of his doctors, saying he had partially achieved his goals.

Isolated behind the prison walls and with his health failing amid fears of the lingering effects of a chemical weapon poisoning last year, Mr. Navalny had sought treatment from doctors of his choice. He went on a hunger strike on March 31st.

The prison authorities never allowed access to Mr. Navalny’s personal doctor. They provided medical treatment, first in a prison hospital, then in a civilian hospital, and then this week they allowed specialists to examine him.

“The doctors I completely trust have stated that we have gotten enough for me to stop my fast,” said Mr. Navalny in a statement posted on his Instagram account.

Medical care has become a key political issue for Mr. Navalny and his movement. He barely survived last year’s poisoning, which he blamed on the Russian government. The Kremlin has denied any role.

After returning to Russia after being treated for poisoning in Germany, he was arrested on parole for a sentence which he rejected as politically motivated. He is currently serving a two and a half year sentence.

His supporters say he is now at risk of dying from ill-treatment in prison.

Mr Navalny said doctors advised him to stop the hunger strike because, if he continued, “there would be no one left to treat.”