US News Russia: Skripals are being 'forcefully contained'

23:25  16 may  2018
23:25  16 may  2018 Source:   news.sky.com

Russia hits out at Britain over Skripals access

  Russia hits out at Britain over Skripals access Russia has hit out at Britain for continuing to block physical access to nerve agent victims Sergei and Yulia Skripal.   The country's ambassador to the UK, Alexander Yakovenko, repeated his claim that Britain had "abducted" the pair as they recovered from the novichok poison attack in Salisbury.Mr Yakovenko said relations between Russia and the UK were "really very low" after his country was blamed for the poisoning and said talks had not been constructive.He said that officials responded to his request to meet the Skripals by saying "we are not ready to provide this sort of contact".

Is this just to distract us from the inexplicable idea that the Skripals were hit with the most deadly nerve poison known to man, but remained unaffected for two hours? The alleged crimes for which Russia must be punished include other crimes for which it was not responsible, such as “invading Ukraine”

READ MORE: Russia has 13 questions to OPCW over Skripal case. Russia 's Ambassador in London, Alexander Yakovenko has repeatedly stated Russia has been kept out of the loop. Russia has asked for samples so it can do tests and has insisted it be allowed to investigate, after being blamed.

Yulia Skripal is no longer in a critical condition © Other Yulia Skripal is no longer in a critical condition Russia has accused the UK of casting a veil over the case of poisoned spy Sergei Skripal, claiming he is being held against his will. 

Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a nerve agent in Salisbury in March, and have since declined offers of help from their home country of Russia.

But Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova says the Skripals are being held in Britain against their will and has claimed the former spy Mr Skripal is still a Russian citizen, despite finding refuge in the UK when he was found to be a double agent.

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Yakovenko said the poisoning of the Skripals was "a huge provocation against Russia ". He declined to say who might have injected the Skripals with the Novichok. Poisoned: Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal , 66, and his daughter Yulia Skripal , 33.

Poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal . Sergei Skripal is a former Russian military officer and British spy who acted as a double agent for the UK's intelligence services during the 1990's and early 2000's, until his arrest in December 2004.

She said: "We see it as a murder attempt of Russian citizens and huge political provocations and burden of proof lies with UK side. They still refuse to provide consular access saying Yulia does not want to communicate with any Russian representatives while Sergei is a national of UK.

Related: UK Claims Russia Spied On Sergei And Yulia Skripal For At Least 5 Years (Wochit)


"We would like to see proof that they're refusing and we haven't seen that so far," she added.

"We want to hear them say it to us out loud if they don't want any contact.

"We see it as a forceful containment, that they're being taken by UK state - gross violation of bilateral agreements."

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The attack on the Skripals is a "gross folly," which is not beneficial to Russia , he stated. "Two Russian citizens were attacked on the territory of Great Britain.

He said that Russia insists on being given “all evidence regarding a terrorist attack against Russian citizens at the territory of Great Britain.” Yulia Skripal , 33, who was poisoned along with her father Sergei Skripal in Salisbury earlier in March, is a Russian citizen.

Ms Skripal pictured with one of her father's two cats - one has died and the other is missing. Pic: Facebook © Other Ms Skripal pictured with one of her father's two cats - one has died and the other is missing. Pic: Facebook She also said that Britain is continuing to point the finger at Russia without evidence about who was behind the attempted murder of the father and daughter.

She added that Russia will be doing all it can to "disentangle the situation" so the process "will be more transparent so the veil cast by UK will be lifted".

Speaking at a weekly media briefing, Ms Zakharova also commented on Viktoria Skripal, the cousin of Yulia, and her failed attempts to be granted a visa.

She said: "Not long ago they refused to give Viktoria Skripal a visa, they said if she requests a visa again this will be considered.

"But again this is nothing but a lie - Viktoria was refused on a second application without any explanation at all. [It] Completely contradicts statements made by UK government."

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READ MORE: Russian Journalist Covering Skripal Case Reveals She Was Threatened in UK. UK Reportedly Wants to Prod EU to Slap Sanctions on Russia Over Skripal Case. contains insults, threats to other users, individuals or specific organizations, denigrates dignity or undermines business

Sergei and Yulia Skripal © Other Sergei and Yulia Skripal Last week, the country's ambassador to the UK, Alexander Yakovenko, repeated his claim that Britain had "abducted" the pair as they recovered from the novichok poison attack in Salisbury.

Parts of the cathedral city were cordoned off for weeks as police conducted the investigation, and there have been warnings that "hot spots" of the poison could remain.

They were targeted with up to 100mg of the deadly nerve agent, with the highest concentration of it found on Mr Skripal's front door.

The UK's representative to the United Nations, Karen Pierce, told a meeting in April there was "no plausible alternative explanation than Russian state responsibility for what happened in Salisbury".

She said: "Russia has a proven record of conducting state-sponsored assassinations including on the territory of the United Kingdom.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova speaks to the media in Moscow on March 29, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images) © Other Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova speaks to the media in Moscow on March 29, 2018. / AFP PHOTO / Yuri KADOBNOV (Photo credit should read YURI KADOBNOV/AFP/Getty Images) "No terrorist group or non-state actor would be able to produce this agent in the purity described by the OPCW testing and this is something Russia has acknowledged.

"The Russian state has previously produced novichok and would still be capable of doing so today."

Mr Skripal and his daughter have defied medical odds - he is no longer in a critical condition and she has been discharged from hospital.

Russia may have Facebook users' data mined by Cambridge Analytica, whistleblower says .
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