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Kremlin mocks Navalny over underwear poisoning account

Kremlin mocks Navalny over underwear poisoning account
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Russian officials ridiculed opposition leader Alexei Navalny Tuesday after he seemingly tricked a Kremlin agent into discussing how his team poisoned Navalny by applying a nerve agent to his underpants.

Dmitry Peskov, a spokesperson for Russian President Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinHow to think about Russia Do Biden's 'tough new sanctions' give Putin Nord Stream 2? Russia vows retaliation for new US sanctions: 'We do not intend to put up with this' MORE, said on a conference call Tuesday that he personally believed Navalny to be mentally unstable.

“We can say that the patient has a pronounced persecution mania. You can also clearly identify certain signs of megalomania,” Peskov said, according to Reuters.

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Kira Yarmysh, a spokesperson for Navalny, pushed back on the comments on Twitter, noting that the Kremlin has both accused him of faking his coma and said it was the result of diabetes. She also pointed out that Russian officials have both accused Navalny of having a persecution complex and confirmed he is the subject of FSB surveillance.

Navalny earlier this week revealed a recording of his call with Konstantin Kudryavtsev, an FSB toxins specialist. Posing as an official with the Russian National Security Council, Navalny asked Kudryavtsev why the poisoning did not successfully kill him.

In the call, Kudryavtsev said the nerve agent, Novichok, was applied to the inseam of Navalny’s underpants and activated by his sweat. He blamed the opposition leader’s survival on the diversion of his flight to Moscow once he took ill.

"The flight is about three hours, this is a long flight," Kudryavtsev said on the call. "If you don't land the plane the effect would've been different and the result would've been different. So I think the plane played the decisive part."

Navalny, who was hospitalized in Berlin, has since emerged from his coma and remains in an undisclosed location.