(CNN)Paul Whelan, an American detained in Russia, returned to his labor camp last Wednesday after spending nearly three weeks in a medical facility at a different camp, his brother said Monday.
During his time at the facility, Paul Whelan was not able to contact his family, David Whelan said in an email to reporters.
According to David, Paul Whelan was not given medical attention until two weeks into his stay there, and after a chest and elbow x-ray, “he was given no additional medical treatment.”
“Paul has returned to his labor camp in much the same condition he left it,” David said.
Paul Whelan told CNN in a phone call in early June that he had a lingering cough and bursitis in his elbow from factory work in the camp, adding that “getting medical care here is very difficult.”
Upon his return to labor camp IK-17 in Mordovia — about eight hours drive from Moscow — Paul Whelan was permitted to call his parents.
“Apparently, the warden at IK-17 cancelled Paul’s phone account and so he was not able to call while he was away,” David Whelan said, but noted that “one possible explanation is that Paul was moved from IK-17 and left out of communication for more than two weeks in order to keep him on ice.”
“Not that he had planned any more audio statements, but this neatly kept Paul quiet during the meeting between President Biden and President Putin and afterwards,” he said. “Otherwise, the lack of medical care and long stay don’t make much sense on their own.”
CNN has reached out to Russia’s Federal Penitentiary Service for comment.
The former United States Marine was detained in Moscow in December 2018 and sentenced to 16 years in prison for an espi
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