Putin enemy Navalny ends prison hunger strike on day 24

Moscow — Imprisoned opposition leader Alexei Navalny said Friday after seeing a doctor, he ended the hunger strike and was warned by the doctor that continuing it would endanger his life.

In an Instagram post on the 24th day of the hunger strike, Navalny said he would continue to seek medical attention to address his main requirement of numbness in his legs and arms. However, he said he would stop the strike after being examined by a doctor unrelated to the prison doctor. This is what he called “a big step forward.”

He also acknowledged a large-scale pro-Navalny protest across Russia on Wednesday and several letters and statements in support of him from public figures and government officials around the world.

“Thanks to the great support of good people all over the country and around the world, we have made great strides,” Navalny said in his message from behind the bar. “Two months ago, my request for medical assistance caused a grin. I wasn’t given any medication …. Thanks to you, I was examined twice by a panel of private doctors. it was done.”

Another reason he ended the hunger strike was that some of his supporters refused to eat at a show of solidarity with him, Navalny said.

Russian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin will attend a conference held in Moscow, Russia on March 24, 2021. (Sputnik via Reuters / Alexei Dordinin / Kremlin)

“When I read it, I shed tears from my eyes. God, I’m not even familiar with these people, and they do this for me. President Vladimir Putin’s most prominent A 44-year-old politician, a critic, said:

He said he would start “getting out of the hunger strike” on Friday and the process of ending it would take 24 days.

Navalny began the strike on March 31, after suffering severe back pain and desensitization of his legs. Prison officials said he had all the medical assistance he needed, but Navalny claimed he was virtually untreated.

Navalny’s doctor feared he was dying on Saturday as his test results showed a sharp rise in potassium, which could cause cardiac arrest, and a rise in creatinine levels, which indicates kidney damage. He said he was.

He was transferred from a penal colony east of Moscow to another prison ward in the city of Vladimir, 110 miles east of the capital, on Sunday.

Russian Navy protest
On April 21, 2021, people clash with police during a protest in support of opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who was imprisoned in St. Petersburg, Russia. (DmitriLovetsky / AP Photo)

The day after large-scale protests demanding his freedom rushed across Russia, his team of doctors issued a letter urging him to end the hunger strike.

The letter revealed that Navalny was taken to a regular hospital in Vladimir on Tuesday, where he was examined and “on demand” by a doctor. It said they were given the results of those tests on Thursday through Navalny’s lawyer and family.

Doctors continue to insist on access to Navalny, but are seen by “private” doctors from outside the prison and “an objective test sufficient to end the strike.”

Navalny was arrested in January after returning from Germany, where he spent five months recovering from the nerve agent poisoning that accused the Kremlin. This is an accusation rejected by the Russian authorities.

Alexei Navalny and his wife Julia
Published on Instagram account by Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, this handout shows him and his wife Julia taking pictures at a hospital in Berlin, Germany, on September 15, 2020. (Navalny Instagram / AP photo)

He was immediately tried for violating the suspended sentence resulting from the 2014 embezzlement conviction. He was ordered to serve the remaining two and a half years in prison.

Navalny’s arrest triggered a massive protest. This is the greatest manifestation of the Kremlin’s rebellion in the last few years. Authorities responded with strict crackdowns, arresting thousands and imprisoning hundreds. Navalny’s aides and associates throughout Russia were also targeted for detention and assault. Some of his top allies were beaten by criminal accusations and put under house arrest.

Last week, Russian authorities took pressure to a new level, and the Moscow public prosecutor’s office called on the court to label it as a network of his foundations and regional offices as a militant group for the fight against corruption. Human rights activists say such a move would paralyze their activities and expose their members and donors to up to 10 years in prison.

Meanwhile, Navalny will face some tough days, his close ally Lyubov Sobol said in a Facebook post. “It’s going to be a very difficult day to get out of hunger. I know myself,” writes Sobol, who spent 32 days on a hunger strike in 2019.

“The first week of coming out is basically the same hunger strike. You can’t eat anything. You only drink a very small amount of juice and very thin porridge …. (he) eats solid food right away. It won’t start, “she added, adding that the lack of access to regular and fresh food in prisons complicates the situation.

By Daria Litvinova