Russian hospital claims Putin critic Navalny wasn't poisoned, bars his medevac to Germany

A picture taken on August 20, 2020 shows a general view of Omsk Emergency Hospital No. 1 where Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was admitted after he fell ill in what his spokeswoman
(Image credit: YELENA LATYPOVA/AFP via Getty Images)

The Russian opposition leader who is in a coma, possibly after being poisoned, is reportedly not being allowed to transfer out of a state-run hospital.

Alexei Navalny, prominent critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, was hospitalized this week after he suddenly became ill on a flight to Moscow from Siberia, and his spokesperson said that "We suspect that Alexei was poisoned by something mixed into [his] tea." On Friday, Navalny's spokesperson said he is not being permitted to transfer out of the state-run hospital where he's being treated, describing this refusal to let him leave as "an attempt on his life," CBS News reports. Doctors from Germany already arrived with the intention of transferring Navalny, according to The Wall Street Journal.

The hospital is claiming that Navalny's condition is too unstable for him to be transferred, The New York Times reports. Doctors also claim that "no poisons or traces of their presence" were found in Navalny's body and that "we do not believe that the patient has suffered poisoning," asserting that he suffered from "a sudden drop in blood sugar" due to a "metabolic disorder," per CBS.

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But Navalny's wife, Yulia Navalnaya, alleges that officials aren't allowing him to be transported out of the hospital because they hope "to make the chemical substance that is in Alexey's body disappear," CNN reports. She added that "we of course cannot trust this hospital and we demand for Alexey to be given to us, so that we could have him treated in an independent hospital whose doctors we trust." Navalny's spokesperson also said, per the Journal, that the Russian doctors, "of course, didn’t make the decision, but the Kremlin did."

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