(CNN) — Former high-level Russian official Anatoly Chubais is in a European hospital after exhibiting symptoms of Guillain-Barré syndrome, a neurological condition, according to prominent Russian journalist and TV personality Ksenia Sobchak.
Sobchak said he spoke with Chubais’s wife, who said that “her husband’s condition is unstable. He suddenly felt bad, he began to lose feeling in his arms and legs.”
Sobchak, daughter of the late Anatoly Sobchak, former mayor of St. Petersburg and political mentor to Russian President Vladimir Putin, was a 2018 presidential candidate and has been critical of Putin in recent years, including the invasion Ukrainian Russian.
The journalist directly quoted Chubais, who said of his condition: “I was hospitalized in one of the European clinics with a diagnosis of Guillain-Barré syndrome. State of moderate severity, stable.”
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Guillain-Barré syndrome is a rare disorder in which the body’s nerves are damaged by the immune system.
Chubais did not respond to a CNN request for comment and it is unclear where in Europe he is currently located.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Monday that the Kremlin had no details about what happened to Chubais, but said it was “sad news.”
Chubais left his post as the Kremlin’s special envoy for the environment in March. Reuters, citing two sources familiar with the matter, said he left the country because of the war in Ukraine. Chubais did not respond to CNN’s request for comment at the time. In March, the Kremlin confirmed that Chubais had left his post. Chubais had held the position since December 4, 2020, TASS said.
Anatoly Chubais rose to fame as Boris Yeltsin’s finance minister in the 1990s. In the early days of Putin’s rise to power, Chubais was considered an opponent by the now president. Putin claimed in a series of interviews in 1999 that Chubais did not accept the Kremlin job he was initially offered.
In recent years, Chubais continued to call for economic reforms and was one of the few remaining liberals associated with the Russian government.