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Speaker of Russia’s Parliament suspects that German intelligence agents poisoned Navalny to limit Moscow’s options in Belarus

State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin thinks German intelligence agents may have poisoned Russian opposition figure Alexey Navalny as part of a plot to undermine Moscow’s support for Belarusian sovereignty. 

In comments published on the State Duma’s website on Friday, Volodin condemned the European Parliament’s recent decision to cease recognition of Alexander Lukashenko’s presidency on November 5 and welcome the Belarusian opposition’s “Coordination Council” as an “interim representation of the people”:

“After the European Parliament’s statements, a case could be made that foreign intelligence agencies are behind the situation with Navalny.”

Volodin says Germany’s federal parliament and other legislatures throughout Europe should investigate the potential involvement of their own security agencies in the attack against the Russian oppositionist.

Earlier this week, the European Parliament also adopted a resolution calling for Moscow’s full compliance with a proposed investigation by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons into apparent breaches of Russia’s international commitments in the area of chemical weapons.

Specialists in Europe have concluded that Alexey Navalny was exposed to a Novichok-class nerve agent on August 20. He was initially hospitalized in Omsk and later transferred to Berlin, where his condition has slowly improved. The Russian government has denied any involvement in Navalny’s illness, and state officials were reluctant at first to acknowledge that he’d been poisoned at all.