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15 Oct, 2020 13:14

An extra dose of Novichok? Russian activist Navalny could have been poisoned on two separate occasions in Tomsk, claims US media

An extra dose of Novichok? Russian activist Navalny could have been poisoned on two separate occasions in Tomsk, claims US media

The latest US media update on the increasingly complicated case of Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny suggests he could have been poisoned not once, but twice on the fateful August day when he first became ill over Siberia.

Following theories that he was poisoned via tea at an airport cafe or using a water bottle in his hotel room, there is now a suggestion that it could have been both.

According to the New York Times, citing its customary anonymous source - this time purportedly in the German security forces - experts in Berlin believe Navalny’s tea was likely spiked at Tomsk airport. He was captured in a café there in a photo widely shared on social media on the day of his hospitalization. In addition, traces of poison were supposedly found on a bottle in his Tomsk hotel room.

“This would suggest that Mr. Navalny had come in contact with the poison before arriving at the airport, or perhaps that he was poisoned twice,” the Times states.

Also on rt.com EU sanctions six senior Russian officials over Navalny 'poisoning,' claims they knew of alleged Novichok use on opposition figure

Contrary to the Western consensus that Navalny was poisoned with the knowledge of Russian officials, the Kremlin has repeatedly rubbished any suggestions of its involvement. On October 10, the Russian Foreign Ministry once again noted that Germany and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons had failed to provide the Kremlin with official proof of the poison being Novichok, claiming Berlin had ignored four official requests.

On Thursday, in response to allegations of Navalny’s poisoning, the European Union sanctioned six Russian officials thought to be involved in the “assassination attempt.” Those on the list are now banned from entering the EU and have had their assets frozen in the bloc. In the unlikely event they had any. 

Not citing any concrete evidence, the bloc’s official document stated that it is “reasonable to conclude” that the six named Russians had knowledge of the alleged attack.

Navalny fell ill on August 20, on a flight from Tomsk to Moscow. After an emergency landing in Omsk, another Siberian city, he was admitted to a local hospital. Two days later, while in an induced coma, the opposition figure was flown to the Charité clinic in Berlin at his family and associates’ request.

According to German doctors, the results of clinical studies indicate he was poisoned with a substance from the Novichok group of nerve agents. This claim has been denied by Russian doctors, who say they found no trace of poison in his body. On September 23, he was discharged from the hospital and is currently undergoing rehabilitation in Germany.

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