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Iran Press TV

Germany: Navalny out of coma, responding to verbal stimuli

Iran Press TV

Tuesday, 08 September 2020 8:15 AM

Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny has come out of a medically-induced coma, says the German hospital where he is being treated, less than a week after Berlin claimed he had been poisoned with a lethal nerve agent.

Berlin's Charité Hospital said on Monday that Navalny's condition had improved and he was now responding to verbal stimuli.

The 44-year-old Russian opposition figure had been initially taken to a hospital in the Siberian city of Omsk after collapsing during a domestic flight on August 20. His team claimed that a cup of tea that he had drunk before the flight had been poisoned, blaming Moscow.

The doctors at the hospital in Omsk had said tests on his blood samples for poisoning had come back negative.

He was airlifted to Germany on August 22. His aides had alleged that Russia had ordered a ban on transporting him in "an attempt on his life."

Last week, Germany said Navalny had been poisoned with a Novichok nerve agent before his evacuation to Berlin.

The Kremlin has several times rejected allegations that Russia was involved in any attack on Navalny and warned other countries against jumping to conclusions without knowing the full facts.

Russian scientist rules out poisoning with Novichok

Russian scientist Leonid Rink, who was directly involved in the development of Novichok, said the fact that Navalny was out of coma proved that he was not poisoned with the nerve agent, which he said "has a 100 percent lethality."

"I rule out his poisoning, because there are no symptoms… Even if a concentration 400 times less than the lethal dose had been used, he would have come out of a coma but miosis [constriction of the pupil] would have been observed. There were no such symptoms here," the scientist said. "So this isn't Novichok."

Nevertheless, Britain summoned the Russian Ambassador to the UK Andrei Kelin "to register deep concern about the poisoning of Alexey Navalny."

"It's completely unacceptable that a banned chemical weapon has been used and Russia must hold a full, transparent investigation," British Foreign Minister Dominic Raab said in a tweet on Monday.

Choose one speaker: Russia

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova on Monday reiterated her demand that Germany share information about Navalny's physical status.

She urged Berlin to select one speaker to be responsible for all official comments regarding the opposition figure.

"Choose one doctor, head of a clinic, laboratory, chemist, biologist – one person who will become a speaker on this issue, who will go out to the public every day and tell what is happening, what data, formulas are there!" Zakharova said.

Zakharova said "there is an absolute feeling that the script (of Navalny's 'poisoning') was written in advance."

Earlier this month, Russian prosecutors asked Germany to provide the medical records of Navalny for a comparative study of his condition. Germany has refused.

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