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Ukrainian Pilot Held Captive in Moscow Threatens to Resume Hunger Strike

Ukrainian military pilot Nadezhda Savchenko speaks inside a defendants' cage as she attends a court hearing in Moscow, Mar. 4.

Ukrainian pilot Nadezhda Savchenko has threatened to resume her hunger strike unless Ukrainian doctors are allowed to visit her in a Moscow jail before the week is over, her lawyer said.

"Nadezhda Savchenko will wait for Ukrainian doctors to see her until the end of the week, after which she will resume her hunger strike," lawyer Nikolai Polozov said via Twitter on Wednesday.

He added in another tweet that Savchenko's health has not improved since the pilot ended an 80-day hunger strike last week. The prisoner and her lawyers previously urged jail authorities to heed Ukrainian doctors' advice and provide her with recommended foods — such as fruit and vegetable puree — to safely break her fast.

Moscow accuses Savchenko of abetting the killing of two Russian journalists who died during an artillery strike in eastern Ukraine last summer. Kiev and Western governments have urged Moscow to release the pilot, who has emerged as a symbol of resistance to Russia in her home country.

Savchenko was captured by pro-Moscow forces in eastern Ukraine and handed over to Russia this summer.

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