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Russia asks London to confirm sharing Skripal case info with individuals

April 21, 5:28 UTC+3 MOSCOW

The statement came in response to public allegations by Vladimir Uglev, claiming to be a "Novichok" inventor and saying he is sure that A-234 was used to poison Sergei and Yulia Skripal

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Police officers near Sergei Skripal's home

Police officers near Sergei Skripal's home

©  REUTERS/Hannah McKay

MOSCOW, April 21. /TASS/. The Russian embassy in London demands the British to confirm or reject media reports that indicate a possible sharing of the Skripal case information with individuals, the Russian Embassy in London has said.

The statement came in response to public allegations by Vladimir Uglev, claiming to be a "Novichok" inventor and saying he is sure that A-234 was used to poison Sergei and Yulia Skripal.

"Yesterday we learned from the BBC that the self-proclaimed inventor of the so-called "Novichok" Mr Vladimir Uglev was sure that the Skripals had been poisoned with A-234. He comes to this conclusion ‘from all the spectrum data [he] was sent recently,’" the embassy said in a statement.

"This is quite an extraordinary statement. It essentially means that a private citizen has been provided with the information that the Russian Side has not been able to obtain from the British authorities for weeks," the statement reads.

The spokesperson also pointed out that earlier, statements based on access to some kind of "intelligence data" were made by Hamish de Bretton-Gordon, the former commanding officer of the UK’s chemical regiment.

"Of course, these allegations can not be verified. But if we are to believe them, it looks like the British authorities share highly confidential data with private individuals," the statement continues. "This is another gross violation of the OPCW rules. We have asked the FCO to confirm or deny this, and to provide us access to the files that these gentlemen refer to."

According to London, former Russian military intelligence (GRU) Colonel 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 on March 4. Claiming that the substance used in the attack had been a 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.

On April 12, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) released a report which confirmed the information about the toxic agent but shed no light on its origin.

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