LONDON, April 13. /TASS/. Russian Ambassador to the UK in London Aleksandr Yakovenko expressed his surprise over media reports stating that Russian intelligence agency had been spying on ex-GRU colonel Sergei Skripal, who had been convicted in Russia of spying for Great Britain, and his daughter Yulia for at least five years.
"Big surprise. He [Skripal] was released from Moscow. I simply don’t understand how it could happen," the diplomat said. "If somebody was spying, why the British services were not complaining about that? We didn’t see any signs, any applications from the British side that they are not happy with the way Skripals lived in Salisbury," Yakovenko said during the press conference in London.
Earlier, the British news agency Press Association reported on the possible surveillance of the Skripal family, citing National Security Adviser Sir Mark Sedwill’s letter to NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
On March 4, Sergei Skripal, who had been convicted in Russia of spying for Great Britain, 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 nerve agent allegedly developed in Russia, London rushed to accuse Moscow of being involved in the incident without presenting any evidence. The Russian side flatly 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.