Russia’s Navalny in coma, allegedly poisoned by toxic tea
The widow of Alexander Litvinenko, the Russian agent who was killed in London by radioactive poisoning in 2006, voiced concern that Navalny’s enemies within Russia may have decided that it’s time to use a “new tactic.”
(AP News) – Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, one of Vladimir Putin’s fiercest critics, lay in a coma Friday at a Siberian hospital, the victim of what his allies said appeared to be a poisoning engineered by the Kremlin.
Navalny’s organization was scrambling to make arrangements to transfer him to Germany for treatment; a German group said it was ready to send a plane for him and that a noted hospital in Berlin was ready to treat him.
The 44-year-old Navalny fell ill on a flight back to Moscow from the Siberian city of Tomsk on Thursday and was taken to a hospital after the plane made an emergency landing in Omsk, Navalny’s spokeswoman, Kira Yarmysh, said on Twitter.
She told the Echo Moskvy radio station that he must have consumed poison in tea he drank at an airport cafe before boarding the plane early Thursday. During the flight, Navalny started sweating and asked her to talk to him so that he could “focus on the sound of a voice.” He then went to the bathroom and lost consciousness, and has been in a coma and on a ventilator in grave condition ever since.