There has been quite an amount of wrangling over the treatment and health condition of Alexei Navalny recently. Following the same, a plane has left Russia carrying a patient who is in a critical state. It is to land in Germany for treatment based on suspected poisoning. Kira Yarmysh, the spokesperson of Alexei Navalny, made the confirmation on Twitter too. The journey to Berlin is approximately 5-hour long.
Alexei Navalny is a corruption investigator and old politician. The 44-year is one of the fiercest critics of Vladimir Putin, Russian President. He was in the ICU (Intensive Care Unit) in an Omsk hospital since Thursday, August 20, following an alleged poisoning incident. The majority of Navalny supporters believe that the Kremlin is the master-mind behind such a terrible event. They suggest that there was poison in Alexei Navalny’s tea. Besides, there are rumors that the Kremlin is also the reason for the delay in the transfer of Navalny to an excellent German hospital.
German specialists arrive to examine Alexei Navalny
When specialists from Germany arrived on the plane to treat Alexei Navalny, they carried all the advanced equipment. The specialists landed at the behest of the politician’s family early on Friday, August 21, morning. However, the attending physicians from Omsk suggested that he couldn’t move in such an unstable condition. To this, Navalny supporters said that it was a tactic of the authorities to delay until no one could trace any poison in his body. Later, the Omsk medical team saw success only after the German specialists examined Navalny, and said that he was doing better. The final revelation about the politician’s health was made by the same charitable organization that made arrangements for the medevac plan to land in Omsk.
After the examining session by the German doctors, Anatoly Kalinichenko says that Navalny was stable now. Besides, the doctors don’t mind moving to a better place if his relatives agree to do the same. Kalinichenko is the Deputy Chief Physician at the Omsk hospital that was treating Alexei Navalny. Later, the Kremlin stated clearly that the delay in Navalny’s transfer was not at all a political decision. Instead, they were trying to follow the suggestions of the medical experts. While Dmitry Peskov, government spokesperson, supported the claim, a reversal of the same came immediately after pressure started building on the Russian authorities. It seems that this is not the first time a robust political personality has had to face something like this. Besides, the Kremlin has also been in the limelight for being the master-mind behind similar incidents before too.
Support from foreign leaders
On Thursday, August 20, both German and French authorities declared that they wanted to help Alexei Navalny and his family regarding the incident. They also insisted that investigation be held to find out the real cause of the poisoning. On Friday, August 21, Nabila Massrali stated that the Russian authorities were under severe pressure regarding the transfer of Navalny. Massrali is the spokesperson of the European Union. Navalny was a strong personality and had challenged Putin to stand against him in the 2018 Presidential elections. However, he was barred from applying for a nomination. Since then, the 44-year old corruption investigator has become the support of all opposition politicians who want to stand against Vladimir Putin. Presently, the ruling party, United Russia, considers Navalny as one of their biggest challenges.
Alexei is the founder of an anti-corruption foundation that keeps highlighting the loopholes in the present leadership. They have been successful in digging out some of the deepest and darkest secrets of famous Russian leaders, including powerful ones. However, the foundation is facing a financially struggling lawsuit from a businessman, following which it is now not functioning. According to sources, the businessman is a close aid to the Kremlin. Later, there were reports that Navalny was feeling unwell during his return flight from Siberia to Moscow. Therefore, the pilot had to make an emergency landing. His attendants immediately took him to the famous Charité clinic with a history of treating several foreign dissidents and leaders.
Is there a foul-play?
Navalny’s Russian doctor from Moscow, Dr. Yaroslav Ashikhmin, stated clearly in a press about what he feels about the situation. According to him, it is always safer to stay in a place with proper equipment. For example, a place that has as a ventilator and a check-up machine for the lungs and heart is better. Therefore, in this case, Navalny was safer on a plan instead of the Omsk hospital that lacks proper equipment. On the other hand, Yarmysh put up pictures of social media of what she says is the washroom of the Omsk hospital in which the politician was admitted. The figures show squalid conditions, including paint wearing off, dirty walls and floors, and rusting pipes. While on the one hand, Navalny’s family and supporters are stern about poisoning allegations, the Omsk hospital puts forward a contradictory theory.
According to Alexander Murakhovsky, the reason for Navalny’s illness was a sudden metabolic disorder. Moreover, the Omsk hospital’s Chief Doctor says that the politician fell unconscious due to a drop in his blood sugar levels. The video of the statement was a part of the news coverage by a local news outlet by the name of NGS55. However, Dr. Anastasia Vasilyeva, a close aid of Navalny, says that Navalny has been under her treatment for a long time. So, she believes that his metabolic disorder may not be the actual reason for his illness and that there may be a possibility of poisoning.
Does the proof lie in the history itself?
Dr. Yaroslav Ashikhmin, who treats Navalny regularly from 2013, says that he has always seen the man in good health. Besides, he ever came for his timely check-ups and was not suffering from any chronic illness. Therefore, even he is unclear about the sudden condition of his health. On the other hand, Western toxicology experts doubt chances to rule out the possibility of an alleged poisoning so quickly. According to Alastair, Hay possibilities cannot be ruled out so soon because if something is so toxic, it will remain in the body for a long time. However, he also says that the concentration will be so low that it will hardly be traceable, Hay is a retired toxicology expert and a professor. He works in Leeds University’s medical department.
The fact that Navalny, just like several other opposition leaders, is a victim of regular harassment and detention by law enforcement, shows that he can be a victim of such an attack. Plus, most of the time, the attacks have been made by the Kremlin supporters. Back in 2017, a group of men threw antiseptic on the politician’s face damaging an eye permanently. Even last year, he went to a local hospital while he was serving a jail term. He was facing charges of protest rule violation. Co-incidentally, his supporters accused the Kremlin of trying to poison him even then. However, according to the doctors’ suggestions, it was a case of severe allergy. He went back to detention the following day itself.
Support from a victim’s family
In this context, late Russian agent Alexander Litvinenko’s wife stated her opinion. She recalled how her husband passed away in 2006 after drinking tea defiled with polonium-210. It is bright for her as to why Navalny’s family wants to transfer him abroad. Marina Litvinenko says that every moment is crucial during such situations, and tells Navalny’s wife Yulia to be strong.