Russian police claim Navalny was not poisoned but suffered from “pancreatitis”

Version versus version. Russian police said on Friday that the main opponent of the Kremlin, Alexeï Navalny, treated in Germany after falling into a coma in Siberia at the end of August, was suffering from “pancreatitis”, once again rejecting the hypothesis of poisoning .

“The final diagnosis was made by the doctors taking into account several chemical and toxicological studies: disruption of carbohydrate metabolism; chronic pancreatitis with impairment “of certain functions, declared the Siberian branch of the Russian transport police, in charge of the case. “The diagnosis of poisoning […] has not been confirmed, ”said the press release.

At the end of August, Alexeï Navalny was uneasy during a flight in Siberia. In a coma and after two days of hospitalization, he was allowed to be treated in Germany, under pressure from his relatives. He came out of a coma in early September. According to three European laboratories, whose findings were confirmed by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), Alexei Navalny was poisoned by a nerve agent from the Novichok group, a substance designed in Soviet times.

Putin accused by Navalny

The opponent, still recovering in Germany, accused Russian President Vladimir Putin of being behind his poisoning, an accusation refuted by Moscow. According to the versions, the Russian authorities have rejected any poisoning or sometimes accused the Western secret services, the relatives of Mr. Navalny or the opponent himself of being the authors.

The director of the Russian foreign intelligence service (SVR) Sergei Naryshkin argued Friday that the death of Mr. Navalny would have made him a “sacrificial victim” useful to Westerners to “revive the protest movement in Russia”. “It’s very sad to see what has become of Russian intelligence,” Alexeï Navalny reacted on Facebook, calling Mr. Naryshkin a “fool”.

“It’s funny that they released Naryshkine the same day saying that I was poisoned by the NATO countries and this story of the Interior Ministry saying that there was no poisoning” , the opponent added on Twitter. “Apparently, the NATO countries convinced me to go on a deadly diet,” he quipped, referring to one of the versions put forward by Moscow, that his health problems were linked to an unbalanced diet. .

Tensions between Russia and Germany

“Months go by and (Russian) doctors continue to find new diseases in Navalny,” his spokesperson, Kira Iarmych, added on Twitter. “Navalny was poisoned by the Russian special services on the orders of the Russian president on the territory of Russia,” she added.

The alleged poisoning of Mr. Navalny has strained relations between Russia and the West even more. The European Union has thus sanctioned six senior Russian officials in connection, according to Brussels, with this affair. The Russian Foreign Ministry again accused Germany on Friday of refusing to cooperate with Moscow in this affair, under cover of “eccentric pretexts”. He called on Berlin to “refrain from any further artificial politicization of the situation”.

During a telephone conversation Thursday between the head of Russian diplomacy Sergei Lavrov and his German counterpart Heïko Maas, Moscow had already deemed “unacceptable” Berlin’s refusal to “fulfill its international legal obligations” by transmitting Mr. Navalny to Russia.

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