Missing Russian doctor found alive after three-day search
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PRETORIA - A Serbian doctor who treated Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny last year has been found alive three days after he went missing during a hunting trip, the Moscow Times reported on Monday.
Dr Alexander Murakhovsky emerged from a forest near the village of Basliy and sought help from the villagers, the RBC news website quoted the regional government's press service as saying.
The Independent UK said Murakhovsky had left a hunting base in a forest in Omsk, Siberia, in an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) on Friday.
His ATV was found 6.5km from the hunting base on Sunday, according to the regional ministry of internal affairs.
The British publication said local police, officers from the national guard, hunting inspectors and local residents all joined the search.
“Helicopters and drones have also been deployed because of the difficult-to-pass swampy areas of the terrain," the ministry was quoted as saying during the search.
According to the Independent UK, Murakhovsky was formerly the head doctor at the hospital in Omsk that treated Navalny, a long-time opponent of Putin, after he collapsed on a flight in Russia in August last year.
“We saved his life with great effort and work,” he told local media at the time.
Navalny was airlifted to Germany after a couple of days, where Western scientists said he had been poisoned, an act for which he blamed the Kremlin, the BBC said in its report.
According to the Moscow Times, Murakhovsky denied that Navalny was poisoned, saying his doctors had diagnosed him with a metabolic disorder.
The Kremlin has rejected claims that it was behind Navalny’s illness and has questioned whether he was poisoned at all, the Russian publication added.