Doctors for the jailed Russian opposition activist Alexei Navalny say he “will die within the next few days” if not given medical attention.
Alexei Navalny, a staunch critic of President Vladimir Putin, was jailed in February for old embezzlement charges.
Navalny has been on a hunger strike for 18 days, to demand proper treatment for acute back pain and leg numbness.
His doctors including his personal physician, Anastasia Vasilyeva, say recent blood test results indicate he could suffer cardiac arrest or kidney failure at any moment.
The four doctors have written to prison officials seeking permission to see Navalny urgently.
In the letter, which Dr Vasilyeva posted on Twitter, the experts said Alexei Navalny’s potassium had reached “critical levels”.
Reads the letter in part:
This means both impaired renal function and that serious heart rhythm problems can happen any minute.
Having blood potassium levels higher than 6.0 mmol (millimoles) per litre usually requires immediate treatment. The letter says Navalny’s blood test results, which were obtained by his lawyers, showed his were at 7.1.
The doctors have urged prison officials to let them examine Navalny immediately, “taking into account the blood tests and his recent poisoning”.
Alexei Navalny, 44, nearly died in August 2020 when he was poisoned with the chemical nerve agent, Novichock. He accuses President Vladimir Putin of ordering the poisoning, which the Kremlin denies.