London must provide fingerprints of Skripal case suspects to Interpol - diplomat

Charlene Craig
September 10, 2018

United Kingdom's United Nations Ambassador Karen Pierce, far right, and Sweden's U.N. Ambassador Olof Skoog, center, listens as Russia's United Nations Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya, left, speaks during a meeting of the Security Council, Thursday Sept. 6, 2018 at U.N. headquarters.

A senior adviser to Russian President Vladimir Putin says he doesn't know the people whom Britain named as suspects in the poisoning of a former Russia spy.

Therefore, after 6 months of attacks the Prime Minister is pressing for the Kremlin to be hit by fresh global sanctions, after two Russian spies were named as suspects for Novichok attack in Salisbury.

On Wednesday, two Russian nationals, said to be members of Russia's military intelligence service the GRU, were identified as suspects by police investigating the poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal in March. The British government claimed that Russian Federation might have been involved in the incident.

The identification of the two Russian military intelligence officers (said to belong to Russia's main intelligence directorate for its military, Glavnoye Razvedyvatel'noye Upravleniye or GRU) followed a painstaking recreation of their movements, aided in large part by the ubiquitous network of surveillance cameras in the U.K. The two are seen entering the country on March 2, staying in London, and traveling to Salisbury.

Looking at the seriousness in the matter, May has thus called an emergency session of the United Nations Security Council on Thursday and will ask world leaders to back Britain's stand against Russian Federation. She said the global community must take steps to safeguard people against the use of chemical weapons and "the threat of hostile foreign interference".

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Skripal and his 33-year-old daughter Yulia were found unconscious on a bench in Salisbury, 145 kilometres southwest of London, on March 4.

The Skripals survived the attack but only after being hospitalized for weeks in critical condition.

Ben Wallace, the UK's security minister, said that Mr Putin and his government directed, controlled and funded the GRU.

He said his partner, Dawn Sturgess, 44, had applied some of the substance to her wrists before feeling unwell.

The Crown Prosecution Service said the men, who entered Britain under the names Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, are being charged in absentia with conspiracy to murder, attempted murder, and use of the nerve agent Novichok.

"Neither Russia's top leadership nor those in the ranks below, nor any official representatives have anything to do with the events in Salisbury", Peskov said.

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She is expected to speak to other leaders over the next few days as she seeks to forge an global alliance for further action against Russian Federation.

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 issued for the two Russians, British prosecutors said, but Britain will not ask Moscow to extradite them because Russia's constitution does not allow its citizens to be extradited.

The Skripal case triggered a diplomatic crisis with Russian Federation and Western countries mutually expelling a large number of diplomats.

The attack led Britain, the United States, the European Union, and others to carry out a series of diplomatic expulsions and financial sanctions against Moscow.

Sergei Skripal's niece, Viktoria, on Thursday called on British authorities to allow her to visit her family in Britain after her visa applications were denied.

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Russian Federation could only regret London's reluctance to interact with Moscow, Peskov said.

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