Russian ex-spy case: Chemical weapons watchdog confirms UK findings

Chemical watchdog confirms novichok poisoned

Chemical watchdog confirms novichok poisoned

The world's chemical weapons watchdog has confirmed Britain's findings that a nerve agent was used in an attack on an ex-spy and his daughter in Salisbury last month.

The OPCW chemical weapons watchdog has supported Britain's analysis of a nerve agent used to poison a Russian former spy in the UK.

Ex-colonel of Russia's GRU, Chief Intelligence Department, Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia, poisoned in the center of Salisbury town in the evening of March 4, are still struggling for life in the intensive care unit of the local hospital.

The U.K. has called a meeting of the OPCW's executive council for April 18 to discuss next steps, Johnson said.

Johnson said the chemical "was a military grade nerve agent - a Novichok", a group of deadly chemical compounds reportedly developed by the Soviet government in the 1970s and 1980s.

"I am safe and feeling better as time goes by, but I am not yet strong enough to give a full interview to the media, as I one day hope to do", Yulia Skripal said in a statement released by London's Metropolitan Police.

"Laboratory analysis results (.) Confirm findings of United Kingdom in relation to identity of toxic chemical, "said organization based in The Hague in its report presented in London which gives understanding, refore, that corroborates version of Downing Street in which from outset pointed to that The agent was made in Russian Federation".

In an executive summary made public at Britain's request, it said "the toxic chemical was of high purity" but did not name it.

Russian Federation has denied involvement in the attack and contends Britain has not provided evidence to support its allegation.

Russian Federation has said it does not have such nerve agents and President Vladimir Putin said it was nonsense to think that Moscow would have poisoned the Skripals.

The findings were welcomed by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson who said they backed Britain's assertion that only Russian Federation could have carried out the attack. A new analysis from the global oversight organization that enforces chemical weapons treaties doesn't directly name names, but the report falls foursquare behind the analysis of the UK's own investigators. Her father remains "seriously ill", while she's "still suffering with the effects of the nerve agent", Skripal said in the statement, in which she also rejected offers of assistance from the Russian embassy in the United Kingdom. Yulia, 33, was discharged from hospital earlier this week, while her father is still receiving treatment and is said to be improving rapidly.

Yulia said Wednesday she is "still suffering with the effects of the nerve agent used against us".

She lives in Russian Federation but was visiting her father in Britain when they were poisoned. The OPCW worked both lanes and came to the same conclusion in each - that Novichok was used to "severely injure []" the Skripals and one police officer who attempted to help them.

British authorities "must urgently provide tangible evidence that Yulia is alright and not deprived of her freedom", the embassy said in a statement.

A spokesperson from the Russian Embassy in London described Yulia Skripal's statement as "an interesting read".

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