France regrets Russia's lack of 'transparency' over Navalny


France said Friday it regretted a Russian lack of "transparency" following the suspected poisoning of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, who is in a medically-induced coma in a Berlin hospital.

"I do not understand why Russia does not play the game of transparency. It is in its own interest, and we are saying so," Foreign Affairs Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian told RTL radio.

"If they wanted to take the initiative with transparency, it would be to their credit," the top diplomat underlined.

The Kremlin on Wednesday rejected international calls for an investigation into the Navalny's alleged poisoning, saying medics had not identified any toxin.

Le Drian again called for a "transparent" investigation "and when the culprits are found, to put them on trial, so that the lesson can be learnt because this is not the first time there is a poisoning" of an opposition figure in Russia.

Navalny fell ill after boarding a plane to Moscow in Siberia. His aides believe he was poisoned by a cup of tea at the airport, and point the finger at President Vladimir Putin.

Navalny's family fought to have him medically evacuated to Germany, saying they did not trust Russian doctors.

The doctors who treated Navalny for two days in the Siberian city of Omsk said their tests did not find any toxic substances, calling his condition a "metabolic disorder".

However, the Charite hospital in Berlin said Monday that tests indicated poisoning with a substance that inhibits the cholinesterase enzyme, a feature of nerve agents.