Doctors denied access to Navalny prison hospital

Eloise Marshall
April 20, 2021

Russia's penitentiary service on Monday said it was transferring ailing Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny to prison hospital, as the European Union warned it would hold Moscow "responsible" for the state of his health.

Navalny's lawyer Alexei Liptser said after visiting him in the hospital of penal colony No. 3 in the city of Vladimir, east of Moscow, that his health was deteriorating and he had again been denied access to his own doctors.

Mr. Borrell called Mr. Navalny's condition "very worrisome" and repeated demands that Moscow allows his chosen team of doctors to inspect him.

Navalny is serving a three-and-a-half-year sentence over what his supporters say are trumped-up charges. "The state of health of those convicted and jailed on Russian territory can not and should not be a theme of their interest", spokesman Dmitry Peskov said.

The EU in October sanctioned six Russian officials over the assassination attempt, Borrell noted, and in February sanctioned another four individuals over Navalny's arrest and sentencing. The US has also imposed numerous sanctions on Russian entities.

Earlier, his French counterpart Jean-Yves Le Drian also said the bloc was watching Navalny's situation closely, as he warned of possible further sanctions against Russian Federation.

Navalny's case has further isolated Moscow at a time when US President Joe Biden's administration has announced tougher economic sanctions and the Czech Republic, a member of North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the European Union, has expelled Russian spies, accusing Moscow of a role in deadly 2014 explosions at an arms storage depot.

Police warned people not to demonstrate, saying officers would take "all necessary measures to maintain law and order".

Moscow has largely shrugged off global pressure since becoming a pariah to the West in 2014 when it seized Ukraine's Crimea peninsula and backed an insurgency in eastern Ukraine.

Fire wreaks destruction on UCT
The fire spread from the slopes of Table Mountain after it first damaged a section of the Rhodes Memorial Restaurant. City officials said they have not asked residents in the popular Rondebosch suburb and surrounding area to evacuate.

A Ukrainian soldier is seen at fighting positions on the line of separation from pro-Russian rebels near Luhansk, Ukraine, April 16, 2021.

Kiev has been battling Russian-backed separatists in eastern Ukraine since 2014 and clashes intensified early this year, effectively shredding a ceasefire agreed last July.

Kuleba wrote on Twitter that he proposed a "step-by-step plan on how to discourage Moscow from further escalation".

Lithuania's Foreign Minister Gabrielius Landsbergis pushed further, saying the bloc should prepare "a humanitarian mission" to fly him out of Russian Federation for treatment.

But Borrell said there were now no proposals for new sanctions against Russian Federation.

Embassy staff leave the Czech Republic embassy by vehicle, as others applaud them, in Moscow, Russia, April 19, 2021.

Washington and Moscow have recently expelled 10 of each other's diplomats in tit-for-tat moves. He said he had been searched for two hours on arrival at the penal colony.

The Kremlin slammed the Czech expulsions as "provocative and unfriendly".

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