Moscow/Berlin, September 28
German Chancellor Angela Merkel paid a personal visit to Russian Opposition politician Alexei Navalny while he was undergoing treatment in a Berlin hospital for poisoning, her spokesman said on Monday. News of the meeting is likely to annoy Moscow, which rejects the finding of German, French and Swedish experts that Navalny was poisoned with a nerve agent in Russia last month. Russia has repeatedly criticised Germany over what it says is a failure to share information on the case.
“It was a personal visit to Navalny in hospital,” Merkel’s spokesman Steffen Seibert said. Germany still expects an explanation from Russia on the case, Seibert added.
Navalny wrote on Twitter that it was “a private meeting and conversation with the family”. Navalny, a politician and corruption investigator who is Russian President Vladimir Putin’s most visible opponent, was flown to Germany two days after falling ill on August 20 on a domestic flight in Russia. He spent two days in coma in an Omsk hospital, where doctors said they found no poison trace. — Agencies