Nerve agent planted in luggage of Russian agent's daughter

19 March, 2018, 00:19 | Author: Salvatore Jensen
  • Members of the emergency services wearing protective clothing work near the bench where former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found poisoned in Salisbury

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Thursday that Britain had refused to cooperate with Russia "on the fulfillment of its duties as a signatory to the Chemical Weapons Convention".

Prime Minister Theresa May announced the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats on Wednesday in response to the poisoning of a former spy in southwest England.

Russia's Foreign Ministry ordered the expulsion of 23 British diplomats from Russia on Saturday in a tit-for-tat response to Britain's decision to expel Russian envoys in connection with the poisoning of a former Russian double agent and his daughter on British soil.

A British policeman was also poisoned when he went to help them and remains in a serious but stable condition.

"Those measures should sober British politicians up", Dzhabarov said, "primarily Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who dared to make an offensive statement regarding the head of a great state, virtually accusing him of ordering the poisoning of Skripal".

Responding, Mr Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the accusations were "shocking and unforgivable".

She warned that Britain "will never tolerate a threat to the life of British citizens and others on British soil from the Russian government".

Speaking after his meeting at the Foreign Office on Friday, British Ambassador Laurie Bristow said the, "crisis has arisen as a result of an appalling attack in the United Kingdom - the attempted murder of two people using a chemical weapon developed in Russian Federation".

An 83-year-old Russian whistleblower who helped develop Novichok said in an interview published Friday that a few countries in the world have laboratories powerful enough to develop the nerve agent thanks to a formula he published in 2008.

The Kremlin has flatly denied any involvement in the attack, even as state television announcers have pointedly referred to the poisoning as a warning to traitors.

She tells British lawmakers that the military-grade nerve agent used was identified as belonging to a group of nerve agents known as Novichok and of a type developed by Russian Federation.

A Downing Street spokesman has said the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has been invited to come to the United Kingdom to take a sample of the nerve agent.

The Foreign Ministry said Moscow's measures were a response towhat it called Britain's "provocative actions and unsubstantiated accusations".

"You know how many oligarchs find safe haven in London - their money, the real estate, the children sent to secondary schools - and they can not imagine their life without that", he said.

UK-Russia relations have been fractious ever since the assassination of another former Russian spy, Alexander Litvinenko, in 2006.

Shortly after the attack, Russia offered their collaboration to investigate the case and requested the United Kingdom government access to the compound used in the attack so that Russian experts could test it in accordance with the Chemical Weapons Convention, to which both parties have adhered.

Britain and its western allies are blaming Russian Federation, but Mr Logvinov questioned what possible motive Moscow could have.

In London, opposition Labour Party leader Jeremy Corbyn struck a starkly different tone to that of the British government by warning against rushing into a new Cold War before full evidence of Moscow's culpability was proven.



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