Save Romania Union - Freedom, Unity and Solidarity Party (USR PLUS) MEPs announced on Friday having sent a letter to the Russian ambassador to Romania calling for activist Alexei Navalny, the Kremlin's main dissident, to urgently receive specialist health care and be transferred to a medical facility abroad if needed."The life of Alexei Navalny is the responsibility of those who have imprisoned him. Navalny is a man whose life was barley saved once after an attempt at poisoning him, as a result of European action. He is a renowned political dissident that cannot be exterminated in jail without that triggering some serious political consequences. I hope that the Russian authorities will take urgent medical measures to protect Navalny," says Nicolae Tefanuta, a member of the European Parliament's Committee on Foreign Affairs and initiator of the letter, according to a USR PLUS press statement.
USR PLUS MEP Ramona Strugariu, a member on the EP's Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs, says that Alexei Navalny "should not pay with his life for the right to free speech and political opposition in a state that claims to be democratic."
"In accordance with international human rights law, the Russian Federation has a substantial responsibility for the integrity and health of the Russian activist and must take all necessary measures to protect his life and provide the medical care he needs. In his current condition, Navalny cannot remain in Russia. We are calling for his emergency medical evacuation and we hope to see in the Russian authorities the wisdom, lucidity and swift action in thatregard, in these critical moments, when every hour counts," Strugariu says.
According to the statement, through the approach of the MEPs Nicolae Stefanuta, Ramona Strugariu, Dacian Ciolos, Vlad Botos, Alin Mituta, Dragos Tudorache, Dragos Pislaru, and Vlad Gheorghe, USR PLUS joins many other European approaches with the Russian regime, sounding the alarm over the danger in which Navalny finds himself.
In August 2020, Navalny survived being poisoned with a neurotoxic agent developed by the Soviet military. After five months of convalescence in Germany, he was arrested on his return to Moscow in early 2021, then quickly tried and sentenced to two and a half years in prison for violating judicial control in another case.
The 44-year-old politician has herniated discs and has lost 16 kilograms since being imprisoned in late February and nine more kilograms since March 31, when he started refusing food in order to be seen by his trusted doctors, according to the EFE Spanish news agency.