Salisbury novichok poisoning: Russian 'spies' filmed window shopping after attack

10 September, 2018, 13:43 | Author: Donnie King
  • Metropolitan PoliceA surveillance image shows both suspects at Salisbury train station at 4:11

Asked whether President Putin bears responsibility, Ben Wallace told BBC radio: "Ultimately he does in so far as he is the president of the Russian Federation and it is his government that controls, funds and directs the military intelligence".

The two suspects in the Salisbury nerve agent attack will be caught and prosecuted if they ever step out of Russian Federation, the home secretary has warned.

Moscow accused the United Kingdom government of seeking to unleash anti-Russian hysteria on Thursday as Britain sought backing at the UN Security Council for its conclusion that members of the Russian military intelligence service were behind the nerve agent attack on a former spy. Russia has denied involvement in the poisoning, accused the British government of lies and demanded investigative proof be submitted directly to Russian authorities.

"We have full confidence in the British assessment that the two suspects were officers from the Russian military intelligence service, also known as the GRU, and that this operation was nearly certainly approved at a senior government level".

Britain has also called a meeting of the United Nations Security Council - of which Russian Federation is a permanent member - for Thursday. She said the global community must take steps to safeguard people against the use of chemical weapons and "the threat of hostile foreign interference".

Skripal and his daughter were admitted to a hospital after being found unconscious on March 4 in Salisbury.

After trawling through thousands of hours of CCTV footage and separate material, police said they had tracked the men from their arrival at London's Gatwick airport to a budget hotel in east London - from which they carried out a reconnaissance mission in Salisbury on 3 March before returning the following day to carry out their assault and fleeing back to Moscow.

Under plans unveiled earlier this year, police and immigration authorities will be handed anti-terror style powers to intercept individuals to determine whether they are or have been engaged in "hostile activity".

Mr Javid said the GRU operated on a "very short leash from the Kremlin".

Dawn Sturgess, 44, fell ill on June 30 after handling an item contaminated with the nerve agent and was taken to a hospital, while her partner, Charlie Rowley, 45, was also exposed to the nerve agent and taken to hospital in a critical condition.

"Prosecutors from CPS Counter Terrorism Division have considered the evidence and have concluded there is sufficient evidence to provide a realistic prospect of conviction and it is clearly in the public interest to charge Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov. with conspiracy to murder Sergei Skripal and the attempted murder of Skripal, his daughter Yulia, and police officer Nick Bailey", a CPS statement said.

In a statement, the Russian Embassy in the United Kingdom accused the British authorities of being unwilling to engage with them and called on the Government to "give up politicised public accusations".

Russian Federation needs data to confirm or deny the identification of suspects in the Salisbury Novichok attack, the country's presidential spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Friday.

Jeremy Corbyn's spokesman said any responses should be proportionate and evidence-based.

Peskov also said that Russian Federation "has no reasons" to investigate the two individuals charged Wednesday because Britain has not asked for legal assistance in the case.

But he warned: "Its ubiquity brings anonymity to terrorists, paedophiles and cybercrime gangs who law enforcement and intelligence agencies are trying to stop".

A European arrest warrant has been obtained in case either of the two Salisbury suspects travel to the European Union. The poisoning ignited a diplomatic confrontation in which hundreds of envoys were expelled by both Russian Federation and Western nations.

A former GRU Colonel Sergei Skripal in recent years, has facilitated the exploration of Spain and met with her staff in Spanish territory. "We have lost all hope of finding the truth of who is guilty", he said.

Viktoria Skripal also said that she doubts that Sergei Skripal is still alive because he has not communicated with the family since the poisoning. Associated Press writers Nataliya Vasilyeva in Moscow and Jill Lawless in London contributed.


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