An investigation has been opened in Germany on suspicion of poisoning, after a Russian journalist and activist in exile reported health problems after participating in a meeting of Russian dissidents in Berlin, German police told AFP on Sunday.
“An investigation has been opened,” police said, confirming information published by the daily Die Welt on Sunday evening. She did not want to provide more details about the ongoing procedures.
This week, the Russian investigative publication “Agentstvo” published an investigation into health problems faced by two participants in a meeting of Russian dissidents on April 29 and 30, related to businessman-turned-opposition Mikhail Khodorkovsky.
A participant, described as a journalist who recently left Russia, experienced unspecific symptoms during the meeting and said they may have started earlier. The same source added that the journalist went to the Charité hospital in Berlin, where Russian dissident Alexei Navalny underwent treatment after being poisoned in August 2020.
The second participant is Natalia Arnault, director of the non-governmental organization “Free Russia” in the United States, where she has been living for ten years after she was forced to leave Russia.
Arnault was in Berlin at the end of April and then traveled to Prague. The same flyer said she had symptoms and discovered her hotel room had been opened. The next day, she went to the United States and contacted a hospital there as well as the authorities.
Arno posted a message on Facebook this week talking about her problems from “severe pain” to “numbness”, stressing that “strange symptoms” appeared before her arrival in Prague, and added that she was still suffering from symptoms but was feeling better. In response to AFP’s inquiries, the Czech authorities said they did not have any information on this case.