“Let the doctor visit my father,” wrote Navalny’s daughter Daria. Twitter On Sunday, a day after a group of doctors warned he was at risk of kidney failure and heart attack and called for immediate intensive care.
One of them, cardiologist Yaroslav Asgechimin, wrote on Facebook: “Our patient can die at any time.”
On Sunday, Navalny’s supporters also announced that they were calling a nationwide demonstration on Wednesday, April 21.
“The time to act is now,” his close aide Leonid Volkov said in a statement on Facebook. “It’s not just Navalny’s freedom, it’s about his life.”
The demonstration, which supporters previously estimated could be the largest street demonstration in Russian history, is scheduled to take place just hours after President Vladimir Putin delivers his annual address to the nation.
Navalny, Russia’s most prominent opposition politician in the 2000s and a fierce opponent of Putin, went on a hunger strike on March 31 to protest that the prison did not want to provide him with the care he had demanded.
The authorities stated that they offered the 44-year-old the care that he refused, because he asked to see a doctor from outside the prison, which they refused.
The Russian ambassador to Britain accuses Navalny of seeking only attention.
He will not be allowed to die in prison, but what I can tell you is that Navalny is behaving like a hooligan, says Andre Killin in an interview with the BBC.
His purpose in all of this is to draw attention.
In addition to Navalny’s closest relatives, others also tried to persuade the authorities to surrender and allow a doctor from outside.
Among other things, 77 cultural figures, including Nobel Prize winner Svetlana Alexievich and authors Salman Rushdie and J.K. Rowling, have written a joint letter to Putin asking Navalny to give a doctor of his choice.
Poisoned with novitjok
On Saturday, a group of Russian opposition politicians issued a similar plea to the president, and on Sunday, French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Laudria said France was “extremely concerned” about Navalny’s health.
Navalny returned to Russia on January 17 this year after being treated in Germany for poisoning with the neurotoxin Novitjok. He was arrested at the airport and subsequently sentenced to imprisonment on the grounds that he violated his duty to attend while in hospital in Germany.
The Kremlin said it saw no evidence that it was actually poisoned, and instead portrayed Navalny as a rebel backed by the United States on a mission to destabilize Russia.
Alexei Navalny (born in 1976) was Russia’s most prominent opposition politician in the 2000s. Having gained a reputation from the start as an anti-corruption activist, he has increasingly emerged as the main opposition leader against President Vladimir Putin’s regime.
Navalny was repeatedly arrested and convicted, and banned from running in the general election. Instead, he runs a movement that has a strategy of so-called smart voices. It aims to gather opposition-minded voters behind the candidates in the various elections who have the most chance to compete with ruling Russia.
He is a lawyer trained since 2000 and is married to Julia Navalnaga. They have two children, born in 2001 and 2008.
In August 2020, Navalny became acutely ill during a flight from Tomsk, Siberia. After a long stay in hospital in Germany, where it was found that he had been poisoned by the neurotoxin Novitjok, he returned to Russia on January 17, 2021. He was arrested directly at the airport and sentenced to prison since then.