US ‘Disturbed’ Over Jailed Russian Opposition Leader’s Health

US 'Disturbed' Over Jailed Russian Opposition Leader's Health
Jailed Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny
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The Biden led-administration on Wednesday said it is ‘disturbed’ by reports that jailed Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny’s health was deteriorating, urging Kremlin authorities to take actions to ensure his health and safety.

Navalny, who is easily President Vladimir Putin’s most prominent critic was arrested in January and sentenced to 2 1/2 years in jail for violating terms of his parole from an earlier suspended sentence, has been on a hunger strike for about a week in demand of outside medical attention.

His lawyers on Wednesday said his health has been rapidly degrading. Navalny, 44, was moved to the sick ward at the penal colony on Monday for a respiratory illness.

Read Also: Navalny Out Of Medically Induced Coma – Berlin Hospital

Lawyer Olga Mikhailova told Russian media that Navalny has two herniated disks in his back causing him to lose feeling in his hands, The Washington Post reported.

Mikhailova said Navalny was prescribed anti-inflammatory drugs not used by medicine in 30 years that he refused to take.

‘One of the hernias is quite difficult to treat and is not sufficiently described in the diagnosis,’ Mikhailova said. ‘Our neurologist gave us a conclusion that the treatment that was prescribed in the colony was ineffective and could lead to a worsening of his condition.’

Vadim Kobzev, another member of Navalny’s defense, tweeted Wednesday that his client is able to walk by himself but not without pain, and ‘a very disturbing factor is that the disease is clearly progressing in terms of loss of sensitivity in the legs, palms, and hands.’

Kobzev said Navalny’s weight has been dropping a kilogram a day amid his hunger strike while all authorities do is try to dissuade him from the protest.

He added that Navalny is still in the medical ward where his temperature is frequently monitored.

White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki told reporters in Washington, D.C., the Biden administration urges Russian authorities to ensure Navalny’s health and safety.

‘We are disturbed by reports that Mr. Navalny’s health is worsening,’ she said. ‘So long as he is in prison, the Russian government is responsible for his health and well-being. We will continue to monitor the situation closely.’

Navalny was arrested early this year after his plane touched down in Russia following a five-month stay in Germany where he received medical treatment for nerve agent poisoning.

 

AFRICA DAILY NEWS, NEW YORK

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