Deteriorating prison conditions are threatening the health of jailed Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny.

The news came from one of his advisers as Navalny's Anti-Corruption Foundation is trying to turn the upcoming local elections in Moscow into a contest against the war in Ukraine.

Alexei Navalny was arrested in January last year when he returned to Russia from Germany, where he had been treated for what Western laboratory tests showed was a near-fatal attempt to poison him in Siberia with a Soviet-era nerve toxin.

Russia denies that it tried to kill him.


Russian opposition politician Alexei Navalny has been sentenced to more than 11 years in prison on bail violation, fraud and contempt of court charges, which he denies.


Last week, he wrote through his lawyers on social media that he had been sent to a punishment cell for the third time in August, in retaliation for his political activity.

The "Reuters" news agency writes that "the prison service did not respond to a request to comment on this statement."

The punishment cell is two to three meters wide, has a table, a chair and a bed.

This marks a significant deterioration in conditions for the opposition leader, his chief of staff Leonid Volkov said in an interview in Vilnius, Lithuania.


"Now, suddenly, they began to dramatically worsen his condition, which poses a great threat to his health, because no normal person could spend a long time in this particular cell.

And for Alexei, who just survived the poisoning, it is, of course, especially dangerous.

This comes from the Kremlin.

So Putin definitely has a plan.

He wants to make life unbearable for Alexei Navalny.

He wants to punish him more," said Volkov.


The latter said that the popularity of Russian President Vladimir Putin is declining and the same is happening with support for Russia's war in Ukraine.


Both the Kremlin and Putin say Russia's "special military operation" in Ukraine is going according to plan.

They say this operation was necessary after the United States used Ukraine to threaten Russia through NATO expansion and persecution of Russian-speaking people.

Ukraine and its Western allies say these are baseless excuses for an unprovoked war of aggression.

"It would take two, three years for Ukraine to be able to score military victories.

Most economic experts say it will take two to three years for the sanctions to take effect and destroy Putin's economy.

"I would say as an expert, it takes two to three years to dramatically change the attitude of Russian society and make his fight so unpopular that he will not be able to continue it," Volkov said.



He said Russia's February 24 attack on Ukraine showed the Russian leader did not care how Russia was seen internationally, which Mr Navalny's team had thought gave him "a level of protection".

"After the war started, we had to reassess all the risks for Alexei Navalny," Volkov said.

Mr Navalny's team hopes to turn local elections in Moscow on September 11 into a protest vote by offering support to 400 candidates it says have opposed the conflict.

"They face a lot of pressure, even violence and brutality.

They are being beaten," he said.