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World

Russia moves Navalny to prison hospital under Western pressure

  • As the European Union's 27 foreign ministers held virtual talks Monday, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said the bloc held the Russian authorities responsible for Navalny's health.
Published April 20, 2021

MOSCOW: Ailing Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny has been transferred to a prison hospital as the EU warned it would hold Moscow responsible for the state of his health.

The United States on Sunday threatened Russia with "consequences" if President Vladimir Putin's most prominent domestic opponent dies in jail.

Navalny launched a hunger strike three weeks ago and his private doctors warned over the weekend he could die at "any minute".

Russia's prison service, which has barred the dissident's medical team from visiting him, said Monday its doctors had decided to move him to a medical facility at another penal colony outside Moscow.

But it insisted the anti-corruption campaigner's condition was "satisfactory", and said he was taking vitamin supplements as part of medical treatment.

Fears over Navalny's fate have further worsened relations between Moscow and the West, already strained over a Russian troop build-up along the border with Ukraine and a diplomatic row with EU member state the Czech Republic.

As the European Union's 27 foreign ministers held virtual talks Monday, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell said the bloc held the Russian authorities responsible for Navalny's health.

Germany said the EU would be closely watching to ensure Navalny received the necessary care, while Britain urged Navalny's release.

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