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A dozen supporters of Alexeï Navalny, including his personal doctor, were arrested Tuesday when they demanded information on his state of health in front of the penal colony where he is being held. For its part, Amnesty International believes that the opponent is being held in conditions which amount to torture and could slowly lead to his death.

A dozen supporters of Alexeï Navalny, including doctors, were arrested Tuesday, April 6 by the Russian police in front of his penal colony where they had gone to demand information on the state of the opponent, sick and on hunger strike .

Worried about the health of the main critic of the Kremlin, who according to his lawyer has lost five kilos since he stopped eating on March 31, his supporters were found at the end of the morning in front of Camp No.2 in Pokrov , 100 km east of Moscow. They asked to see its director and the people in charge of monitoring Alexeï Navalny’s health, the latter having said that he suffered from a fever, a strong cough and back pain. Unsurprisingly, the authorities did not comply with their request.

In the middle of the afternoon, three police vans arrived to pick up the protesters, including Anastassia Vassilieva, an opposition activist and Alexey Navalny’s personal doctor, noted an AFP journalist.

Dozens of police officers in the vans took doctors in white coats and others, including at least one journalist. According to local police, nine people were arrested for “disturbing public order”.

In the evening, Anastassia Vassilieva was released, according to her team. The arrested journalist also announced on Twitter that he was released a few hours after his arrest.

His condition worsens

According to information from pro-Kremlin Izvestia media published on Monday evening, Alexeï Navalny was transferred to a medical unit after his condition worsened, namely the onset of fever and cough. No official confirmation has been released, however.

According to Alexey Navalny’s lawyer, Olga Mikhaïlova, the prison has only one orderly and no doctor. She said Monday that her client weighed 80 kilograms, against 93 when he arrived in this prison and 85 at the start of his hunger strike.

Since his arrival at Pokrov penitentiary, which is said to be one of the toughest in Russia, he has accused his guards of “torturing” him, notably by deprivation of sleep.

“Unsanitary conditions and tuberculosis”

Alexeï Navalny speaks regularly on social networks without knowing how his messages come out of the penitentiary. He thus told Monday that an inmate of his barracks had been hospitalized for tuberculosis, the third in a few weeks. “Each prisoner prays to God not to end up here because, inside, it is unsanitary, tuberculosis and lack of medicine,” he wrote.

In its annual report published Wednesday, the NGO Amnesty International assures that the Russian opponent is imprisoned in conditions which amount to torture and could slowly lead to his death. Amnesty International has lamented that the main Kremlin critic is deprived of sleep and does not have access to a doctor of his choice in prison.

“Russia, the Russian authorities, could have put him in a situation of slow death and seek to cover up what is happening to him,” Amnesty International secretary general Agnes Callamard told Reuters ahead of the publication of the Annual Report. “Clearly the Russian authorities are violating his rights. We need to do more,” she added. “(They) have already tried to kill him, now they detain him, and impose conditions of detention on him which amount to torture.”

With AFP and Reuters

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