Doctors Denied Access To Kremlin Critic's Prison Hospital

Alexei Navalny has been in prison since January

Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny during a court hearing in February.

Jailed Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who is in the third week of a hunger strike while behind bars, will be admitted to a hospital in another prison, the Russian state penitentiary service said Monday, after the politician's doctor said he could be near death.

Navalny for three weeks has been on a hunger strike, which he began to protest authorities not allowing him to see his personal doctors, according to The Associated Press.

"All the symptoms that he had before, they remain the same". Lawyers say he suffers from two herniated discs that have caused extreme back pain and numbness in his right leg and hands.

Local prison authorities said in a statement on Monday that Mr Navalny's condition was "satisfactory" and that he had been taken to a hospital ward in another prison. He blames the attack on Putin, a claim the Kremlin has repeatedly denied.

Navalny's case has further isolated Moscow at a time when US President Joe Biden's administration has announced tougher economic sanctions and the Czech Republic, a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the European Union, has expelled Russian spies, accusing Moscow of a role in deadly 2014 explosions at an arms storage depot. "All that naturally has a negative effect on a starving man who already had no strength".

Another prominent FBK member, Maria Pevchikh, tweeted that it was wrong to say that Navalny "has been transferred to a hospital".

Ivan Zhdanov, head of Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation, said on Twitter the move "can only be understood to mean Navalny's condition has worsened, and worsened in such a way that even the torturer admits it".

Both France and Germany on Sunday joined a growing global chorus of protest at Navalny's treatment.

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But if restrictions are eased too soon, the province could find itself with over 15,000 cases a day in the coming months. The Canadian Civil Liberties Associations had decried that extension of police power and warned of its potential abuse.

Russia's Interior Ministry on Monday issued a statement urging Russians not to take part in unauthorized rallies, citing coronavirus risks and alleging that some "destructive-minded" participants might provoke unrest.

Navalny is serving a two-and-a-half-year sentence for violating parole terms on old fraud charges he says are politically motivated.

Mr. Navalny on March 31 went on a hunger strike for proper treatment.

On Sunday US National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan said the Kremlin had been warned "that there will be consequences if Mr. Navalny dies". "The state of health of those convicted and jailed on Russian territory can not and should not be a theme of their interest", spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

Faced with the largest deployment of Russian troops on Ukraine's borders since 2014, President Volodymyr Zelensky has requested more help from the West.

But the arrival of a new administration in Washington in January could change the calculus if Biden presses ahead with tougher sanctions than under former President Donald Trump.

Former US President Donald Trump warned against steps by the Biden administration that would encourage cooperation between Russian Federation and China.

Moscow said Sunday it would expel a Ukrainian diplomat, prompting an immediate pledge of retaliation from Kiev. That comment prompted the recall by Moscow of the Russian ambassador to Washington for consultations last month.

Kyiv has been battling Moscow-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine since 2014 and fighting intensified early this year, effectively shredding a ceasefire agreed last July.

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