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The Netherlands, Canada, US propose banning nerve agent used in Salisbury

October 11, 18:59 UTC+3 THE HAGUE

The Netherlands, Canada and the US have suggested banning the nerve agent used in the Salisbury attack

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THE HAGUE, October 11. /TASS/. The Netherlands, Canada and the US have suggested banning the nerve agent used in the Salisbury attack, Canada’s Deputy Permanent Representative to the OPCW Sumita Dixit tweeted on Thursday.

The United States, Canada and the Netherlands "proposed today that the type of chemical agent used in the Salisbury, UK attack be banned," posted Sumita Dixit, who takes part in the 89th session of the Executive Council of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Earlier, the UK Delegation to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons said the UK had supported "the initiative in the OPCW to update the annex to the chemical weapons convention to specifically list Novichok nerve agents". "This will help strengthen the international architecture banning the use of chemical weapons," it said.

Russia also deems it would be useful to amend the Addendum to the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons with regard to chemicals, Deputy Industry and Trade Minister Georgy Kalamanov told the session on Wednesday.

"Back in May 2018, the Russian Federation officially submitted a 300-page document to the OPCW Technical Secretariat, listing about a thousand extra compounds, which we consider it expedient to study from the viewpoint of making amendments to the Addendum to the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons with regard to chemicals," he pointed out.

"The substance known under the Novichok brand in the West has never been produced or stockpiled in our country. At the same time, after the Convention on the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons entered into force and the corresponding commitments were assumed, research work was carried out in hi-tech chemical laboratories of Western countries to study the structure of no less than a hundred compounds related to Novichok agents to one degree or another," the deputy minister noted.

Salisbury saga

If the British version is to be believed, former GRU Colonel Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia on March 4 were affected by a Novichok class nerve agent applied to the handle of the door of their home in Salisbury. London claimed that Moscow was highly likely involved in this incident. Moscow strongly dismissed all speculations on that score, saying that no programs for making such a substance had ever existed in the former Soviet Union or Russia.

On September 5, British Prime Minister Theresa May briefed parliament on the investigation’s findings to declare that two Russians carrying passports issued in the names of Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov were suspected accomplices in the assassination attempt. Britain regards both men as GRU agents. Petrov and Boshirov in an interview to the RT television channel dismissed the charges.

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