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Russian diplomat calls on UK to provide official statement on Viktoria Skripal’s visa

April 06, 20:31 UTC+3

The idea that Viktoria Skripal’s visit to UK is organized by Kremlin is absurd, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said

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Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova

Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova

© Mikhail Tereschenko/TASS

MOSCOW, April 6. /TASS/. Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova has called on London to provide official explanations about the situation around an entry visa to former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal’s niece Viktoria, at least out of humanitarian considerations.

"We urge the United Kingdom to make an official statement to explain the situation around an entry visa to Viktoria Skripal. We thinks that British officials, at least out of humanitarian considerations, must summon their strength to provide an official statement at least on this aspect," she said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 television channel.

"Each country has a right to either issue or deny visas. It is a sovereign right. But bearing in mind that the United Kingdom is practically accusing Russia of organizing an attack on the Skripals, we think the United Kingdom can and should speak up about issuance or denial of a visa to Viktoria Skripal, and we are waiting for such statements," she added.

It is absurd to think that Viktoria Skripal’s visit to the United Kingdom is organized by the Kremlin, Zakharova said.

"Reports are now coming citing unnamed sources in British structures, Foreign Office… There are various theories," she said in an interview with the Rossiya-24 television channel. "Some even say she was denied an entry visa because London allegedly thinks that Viktoria Skripal’s visit is organized by the Kremlin. We have heard hundreds of such absurd statements from the UK."

BBC reported earlier on Friday that former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal’s niece Viktoria, who wanted to visit her cousin Yulia Skripal in the United Kingdom after the Salisbury incident, has been denied an entry visa. According to Reuters, the British authorities told Viktoria Skripal her visa application had been turned down as violating migration rules.

On March 4, former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal, 66, who had been earlier sentenced in Russia for spying for the UK, and his daughter Yulia, 33, were found unconscious on a bench near the Maltings shopping center in Salisbury, UK. Police said they had been exposed to a nerve agent.

Later, London claimed that the toxin of Novichok-class had been allegedly developed in Russia. With that, the UK rushed to accuse Russia of being involved, while failing to produce any evidence. Moscow refuted the accusations that it had participated in the incident and points out that neither the Soviet Union nor Russia have ever done research into that toxic chemical.

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