Alexei Navalny, Russia’s most prominent opposition figure, has questioned reports he suffered an acute allergic reaction after being taken ill in jail.
“I have never had an allergy. Not to food or pollen or anything else,” he wrote in a blog post.
The 43-year-old was taken to hospital with a swollen face, eye problems and rashes on his body. He was in jail for calling for unauthorised protests.
His doctor suggested he might have been exposed to “some toxic agent”.
Mr Navalny has since been discharged from hospital and has returned to jail.
In a statement in Russian posted on his blog and written from his cell, Mr Navalny said he had never had an allergic reaction in his life. He added that his wife suffers from allergies, meaning he knows what they look like.
“At night, I woke up with a hot and prickly face, ears and neck,” he wrote. “I felt like I’d had my face rubbed with glass wool.”
“I had the thought, maybe I’ve been poisoned.”
Mr Navalny was sent to the hospital in the morning, where the doctors diagnosed him with “contact dermatitis”.