| 15 April 2024, Monday |

Jailed Kremlin critic Navalny goes on hunger strike due to lack of medical treatment

Alexei Navalny, an imprisoned Kremlin critic, went on a hunger strike on Wednesday in an effort to compel the prison where he is being held outside of Moscow to provide him with adequate medical treatment for what he says is acute back and leg pain.

The fate of Navalny, one of President Vladimir Putin’s most prominent critics, is in focus after he said last week that being woken up by a guard every hour during the night amounted to torture and that his appeals for medical treatment had been ignored.

In a handwritten letter addressed to the governor of his prison which was posted to social media by his team on Wednesday, Navalny said daily requests for a doctor of his choice to examine him and for proper medicine had been ignored.

“I really need a doctor. Every convict has the right (by law) to invite a specialist to examine and consult him. Even I have such a right and I’m innocent,” Navalny wrote in the letter.

“I demand that a doctor be allowed to see me, and until this happens, I am declaring a hunger strike.”

The IK-2 corrective penal colony 100 km (60 miles) east of Moscow did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

After reviewing Navalny last week, prison officials found his condition to be safe and satisfactory. The Kremlin has refused to comment on his condition, claiming that it is a matter for the federal prison service to handle.

  • Reuters