The German hospital treating Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny said Wednesday that his condition had improved enough for him to be released, and suggested that a “complete recovery” from his poisoning by a lethal nerve agent was possible.
Navalny, 44, spent 32 days in treatment in Berlin’s Charite hospital, 24 of which were in intensive care, before doctors deemed his “condition had improved sufficiently for him to be discharged from acute inpatient care.”
The hospital said that, based on Navalny’s progress, the physicians treating him believe that “complete recovery is possible,” but added that it ”remains too early to gauge the potential long-term effects of his severe poisoning.”
Navalny, the most visible and vocal domestic opponent of Russian President Vladimir Putin, was flown to Germany two days after falling ill Aug. 20 on a flight within Russia.
German chemical weapons experts have determined that he was poisoned with the Soviet-era nerve agent Novichok — findings corroborated by labs in France and Sweden.
It was the same class of Soviet-era agent that Britain said was used on former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England, in 2018. German Chancellor Angela Merkel and other world leaders have called on Russia to investigate fully.
Navalny was kept in an induced coma for more than two weeks as he was treated with an antidote. Members of his team accused the Kremlin of involvement in the poisoning, charges that Russian officials have vehemently denied.
Russia has bristled at the demands for an investigation, saying that it needs Germany to share medical data or compare notes with the Russian doctors who maintain that there was no trace of poison in Navalny’s system while he was at a hospital in the Siberian city of Omsk.
Germany has noted that Navalny was in Russian treatment for 48 hours and that Russia has its own data.
Germany has also enlisted the Hague-based Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons for technical assistance in the case.
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Last week, the international agency said its experts had “ independently collected biomedical samples from Mr. Navalny for analysis by OPCW-designated laboratories”
Results have not yet been announced.