LONDON, September 21. /TASS/. Russian authorities are open to cooperation with UK agencies for investigation of the Salisbury incident, but handing over Russian citizens to other states contradicts the Russian Constitution, Russian Embassy in the UK said in its commentary Tuesday.
"As the London Police’s management rightly noted, handing over Russian citizens to other states would be impossible at the very least in accordance with the Constitution of our country, and this principle will be complied with in the future," the commentary says. "Still, this is not a reason to switch to ‘megaphone justice.’ Russia remains open for professional cooperation between responsible agencies, if the UK abolishes the concept of politically motivated ‘appointment’ of the perpetrators."
Earlier on Tuesday, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson said in an interview that London wants the suspects in the Skripal case handed over. He also mentioned the "high price," paid by Moscow, referring to the expulsion of about 150 Russian diplomats from 28 countries.
Meanwhile, Crown Prosecution Service representative Nick Price admitted that British authorities had filed no extradition requests to Russia, because they know that the Russian Constitution prohibits it.
These statements were made after Scotland Yard announced that a third person - Russian citizen Denis Sergeyev - was accused of the attempted murder of Sergey and Yulia Skripal, as well as Police Sergeant Nick Bailey, plus a number of other crimes. Sergeyev is allegedly also known as Sergey Fedotov and is allegedly a "GRU agent" [Russian Armed Forces General Staff Main Directorate, GU] and an accomplice of the two Russians, named by the UK authorities earlier.
The Salisbury incident
According to the UK version, on March 4, 2018, former Russian intelligence officer Sergey Skripal, convicted in Russia for espionage, and his daughter Yulia were affected by a nerve agent in the town of Salisbury. Later, London claimed that the nerve agent was allegedly being developed in Russia, and used the fact to accuse Moscow of involvement in the incident. Russia has vehemently rejected all accusations. Specialists from the UK’s Porton Down laboratory were unable to determine the origin of the substance that the Skripals were allegedly poisoned with.
On September 5, 2018, then-Prime Minister Theresa May informed the British Cabinet about the conclusions of the investigation, claiming that the two suspects are Russian citizens who carried passports in names of Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, calling them "GRU agents." Petrov and Boshirov later gave an interview for RT, denying these accusations.