Putin rival hospitalised after alleged poisoning

Russian opposition member Alexei Navalny has been admitted into intensive care unit after falling unconscious during a flight.

Mr. Navalny, 44, was carried to Omsk Emergency Hospital after feeling unwell and falling unconscious during a return flight to Moscow from the Siberian city of Tomsk. Local health officials have stated they are carrying out tests to check for poisoning, while state officials have said they would consider offers to treat him abroad.

A figure in the fight against corruption, Navalny has been outspoken in his critique of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The former lawyer is banned from appearing on state media and has been arrested and jailed on multiple occasions. During one of his stints in jail he was hospitalised due to an allergic reaction which doctors attributed to attempted poisoning.

The press secretary for Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, Kira Yarmysh. has stated her belief that the opposition leader’s tea was poisoned as “That was the only thing he drank this morning.”

While the Kremlin has wished Mr. Navalny as speedy recovery, it is not the first time an opposition figure has suffered attempts on their lives. Boris Nemtsov, for example, was shot four times in his back near the Kremlin. Another famous example in 2006, when former KGB Alexander Litvinenko was killed in London after his tea was poisoned with Pollonium-210.

British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab has stated his concern over Navalny’s situation.

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Marco Rizzo