Alekséi Navaln i, the main opposition leader in Russia, on Thursday denounced being subjected to “torture through sleep deprivation” during his stay in the IK2 prison colony, a hundred kilometers east of Moscow.
At the same time, after a prison visit, the activist’s lawyer, Olga Mijailova, has expressed great concern about the inmate’s state of health , who has been suffering from severe pain in his back and one leg for some time.
In a public complaint posted on his website and addressed to the authorities, the blogger has assured that every night he is awakened ” eight times ” by prison officials and taken “in front of a camera” to be filmed.
In the same letter, the opponent, a lawyer by profession, recalled that, according to an order from the Ministry of Justice , prisoners in Russia are guaranteed a “continuous eight-hour sleep.” Both the Third Geneva Convention and the European Convention on Human Rights criminalize sleep deprivation as a form of “torture” .
The activist, who was assassinated last summer by a Novichok-class toxic agent for military use , has been experiencing serious health problems for four weeks . According to the lawyer, the opponent suffers “acute pain in the back and in the right leg” and practically “cannot sit down.” “The right leg can hardly move it,” he continues.
Examined at the dispensary
After being examined at the dispensary of the prison last week, the activist was transferred on Wednesday to a clinic in the city of Vladimir, where an MRI was performed, the results or diagnosis of which he does not know. “The only thing they have given him is ibuprofen, ” Mijailova accused.
The lawyer has demanded his transfer to Moscow to receive adequate care. “You cannot leave him there (in prison) and wait for him to become invalid, ” he begged. Yúlia, Navalni’s wife, has also demanded his release to be treated in conditions, and has accused the authorities of her country of taking revenge on him.
All this information will surely stir up the blogger’s supporters, who are waiting for spring to resume street demonstrations. According to one of the channels of the blogger’s movement on Telegram, more than 200,000 people have already registered in the campaign to demand his release from prison.
Once this figure reaches half a million people, the leaders of the Fund Against Corruption (FBK), the Navalni NGO, plan to call ” a great rally ” in all cities of Russia. “Not setting the date allows us to convene as many people as possible, to better prepare ourselves”, in addition to “making the government’s task difficult to intimidate and disperse” the demonstrations,.