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Two Hunger Strikers Hospitalized In Southern Russia

ROSTOV-NA-DONU, Russia -- Two participants in a hunger strike started by retired miners in Russia's Rostov region last week have been hospitalized in serious condition.

RFE/RL's Russian Service reports that 61-year-old Anatoly Razbeiko is in hospital with severe high blood pressure and serious impairment of his organs.

Another hunger striker, 73-year-old Irina Karnova, was hospitalized on December 6.

There are currently five retired miners still on hunger strike in the town of Zverevo, near Rostov-na-Donu. They are demanding that they receive benefits, including reduced heating prices, that are guaranteed by legislation but which they are not getting.

One hunger striker, Aleksandr Stashkov, told RFE/RL that more retired miners have expressed their readiness to join the protest action.