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British ambassador not to attend meeting on Salisbury incident at Russian Foreign Ministry

March 21, 12:16 UTC+3

Meanwhile, sources said that Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Russia Sven-Olov Carlsson would attend the meeting

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MOSCOW, March 21. /TASS/. British Ambassador to Moscow Laurie Bristow will not attend the meeting on the Salisbury incident that the Russian Foreign Ministry plans to arrange on Wednesday, a source in the embassy told TASS.

"The British ambassador will not attend today’s meeting at the Russian Foreign Ministry. We are considering the possibility to participate in it at the working level," the source said.

Meanwhile, sources in the European Union’s mission told TASS that Deputy Head of the EU Delegation to Russia Sven-Olov Carlsson would attend the meeting.

On Tuesday, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova announced that the ministry had "invited all the ambassadors accredited in Russia to a meeting with the senior officials and experts of the Non-Proliferation and Arms Control Department" in order to discuss the Skripal case.

On March 4, former Russian military intelligence (GRU) Colonel Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia suffered the effects of a nerve agent in the British city of Salisbury. Skripal was earlier convicted in Russia of spying for Great Britain and exchanged for Russian intelligence officers.

British Prime Minister Theresa May said the substance used in the attack had been a Novichok-class nerve agent developed in the Soviet Union. On March 14, she accused Russia of an "unlawful use of force" against the United Kingdom and announced that London would expel 23 Russian diplomats and take other restrictive measures.

Russia has rejected all of the United Kingdom’s accusations. On March 17, the Russian Foreign Ministry said that in retaliation to the UK’s steps, 23 British diplomats would be expelled within a week, the British consulate general in the city of St. Petersburg would be closed and the British Council would have to shut down its operations in Russia. At the same time, Moscow pointed out that further measures could be taken "should there be any more hostile actions against Russia."

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