UNITED NATIONS, April 5. /TASS/. Russia is trying to clear up the situation around the poisoning of former Russian military intelligence officer-turned-British spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia Skripal, as it is full of inconsistencies, Russia’s UN Ambassador Vasily Nebenzya told a session of the UN Security Council on Thursday.
"We hear a lot of versions that lack facts and proof," he said. "Everybody in Russia wants to clear up this murky story, but the British authorities have few versions, one, to be exact, which they pass off as the verdict," he said.
"How do the charges correlate with a statement from Scotland Yard that the investigation may take weeks?" the Russian diplomat said. Nebenzya listed a number of questions that the British side has failed to answer - where were the Skripals on the day of the incident, where had law enforcement agencies taken an antidote that they were allegedly given, what Skripal engaged in, where he made trips to, and where is the footage from CCTV cameras.
On March 4, Sergei Skripal, who had been convicted in Russia of spying for Great Britain and later swapped for Russian intelligence officers, and his daughter Yulia suffered the effects of an alleged nerve agent in the British city of Salisbury. Claiming that the substance used in the attack had been a so-called Novichok-class nerve agent developed in the Soviet Union, London rushed to accuse Russia of being involved in the incident. Moscow rejected all of the United Kingdom’s accusations, saying that a program aimed at developing such a substance had existed neither in the Soviet Union nor in Russia.
London expelled 23 Russian diplomats without providing any evidence and said other measures against Moscow would be taken. Moscow took tit-for-tat steps expelling the same number of British diplomats from Russia and ordering to close the British Consulate-General in St. Petersburg and shut down the British Council’s offices in Russia.
At a session of the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) on Wednesday, Western nations dismissed the Russian-Iranian-Chinese proposals on a joint objective investigation of the Salisbury poisoning.