WASHINGTON, March 13. /TASS/. Reports on the alleged involvement of the Russian state in the poisoning of the former colonel of Russia’s GRU military intelligence service, Sergei Skripal, make up a yet another instance of fake news, a spokesperson for the Russian Embassy in Washington told reporters on Monday in a comment on a statement by the US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson.
Tillerson said Washington agreed with the UK authorities’ conclusions on the incident involving Skripal and his daughter Yuliya, allegedly poisoned with a combat-grade nerve agent.
"Baseless accusations of any imaginable sins apportioned to Russia continue multiplying," the spokesperson said. "A yet another fake story was circulated on Monday. It claimed the presence of a Russian trace in the tragic events in the UK."
"At present, however, there isn’t a single evidence to support the correctness of the British - and now the American - authorities’ conclusions," he said. "Will they ever learn to check facts and then pass judgments? Have they forgotten Secretary of State Colin Powell shaking a glass-tube with white powder at a UN Security Council meeting [in February 2003 when the US was getting ready for the invasion of Iraq - TASS]? When will decency come back to Washington’s political life?"
Former GRU colonel Sergei Skripal, 66, and daughter Yulia, 33, were exposed to the impact of an unknown nerve agent on March 4. Passersby found them on a bench near a shopping mall in Salisbury, UK. Both of them were taken to hospital where they get intensive care for an aggravated condition now.
British Prime Minister Theresa May has described the situation as an indiscriminate and irresponsible action on the part of Russia.
Tillerson claimed in his statement Washington fully trusted the UK investigation and the assessment of Russia’s responsibility for the attack.
"We have full confidence in the UK’s investigation and its assessment that Russia was likely responsible for the nerve agent attack that took place in Salisbury last week," he said in a statement.
The Russian Foreign Ministry’s official spokesperson Maria Zakharova called the debates on the story in the British parliament a circus show, saying London had embarked on a yet another political smear campaign based on provocation.
She called on the UK authorities to make public the results of investigation of the cases of Alexander Litvinenko, Boris Berezovsky, Alexander Perepilichny, and some other former Russian citizens who died in Britain in bizarre circumstances.