Participant in opposition hunger strike in Novosibirsk region hospitalized

Sergei Boiko, an activist of the opposition PARNAS party, has been hospitalized after 12 days of a hunger strike, Leonid Volkov, the head of the Democratic Coalition's campaign staff in the Novosibirsk region, told Interfax on Aug. 8.

"He felt not very well this morning. His blood pressure rose, and we called an ambulance so as not to take risks. However, doctors from the ambulance said they suspected angina, and they are obliged to hospitalize a person in such a situation," Volkov said.

Boiko has participated in the hunger strike since July 27, Volkov said. He also said he could not confirm that Boiko had terminated his hunger strike.

The Novosibirsk regional elections commission had ruled on July 27 not to register a list of candidates nominated by the PARNAS party to run for the regional legislative assembly, based on recommendations by a task force verifying signatures collected in support for candidates nominated for the elections, which found over 1,300 signatures collected in favor of PARNAS to be invalid.

PARNAS activists later went on a hunger strike right in the office of the Novosibirsk regional elections commission's chairman but were removed from there by police.

These and five other activists were fined 500 rubles to 1,000 rubles for disobeying police on July 28.

The Central Election Commission (CEC) ruled on Friday to reject a complaint filed by PARNAS against the Novosibirsk regional elections commission's decision not to register the party's list of candidates. The CEC made this decision based on the task force's recommendations.

A number of prominent Russian opposition leaders have called on Novosibirsk activists to stop their hunger strike.

"I respect the resolve of the Dem.coalition in Nsk [Novosibirsk] to go all the way, and I have such an experience, but I still call for stopping the hunger strike. Struggle is still ahead," former Yukos head Mikhail Khodorkovsky said on Twitter.

Mikhail Kasyanov said on Facebook that the activists should stop the hunger strike for the sake of their beloved ones.

"Today is the 12th day of your just protest, which thousands of voters in the Novosibirsk region and our supporters in other regions of the country treat with huge sympathy, support, and respect. You ability to continue fighting is very important to them, and what is especially important to your families and all of us is your health," Kasyanov said.

Opposition leader Alexei Navalny also supported the call.

"Following [activist] Sergei Boiko's hospitalization today, we held a brief remote conference comprising Khodorkovsky, Kasyanov and me and decided to call on Leonid Volkov, Yegor Savin, Sergei Boiko, Alexander Forov, and Fyodor Gorozhanko to stop the hunger strike," Navalny said on his website.

Later Mikhail Khodorkovsky posted on Twitter that the hunger strike has been stopped. 


Read more: Is the protest movement dead?


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