Thursday, 20 June, 2019

Novichok attack: Putin orders hunt for ‘traitor’ who leaked identities

Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov Modal Trigger Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov Metropolitan Police in London
Deanna Wagner | 16 September, 2018, 06:42

Moscow could avoid these sanctions if it meets a November deadline to allow on-site inspections of facilities linked to the chemical used in the March attempt to kill former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, England and provides a "verifiable" assurance that it won't used banned chemical weapons again.

The interview prompted scorn and mockery in Britain.

But many were quick to point out that on March 4, the second day the two Russians visited Salisbury, the snow from previous days had cleared, and both CCTV images of Ruslan and Boshirov, and pictures taken by the Journal when the Skripals fell ill show completely unobstructed pathways.

Boshirov: "You know, let's not breach anyone's privacy".

The Moscow-based editor-in-chief of RT, Margarita Simonyan, said that the two men had contacted her by phone and she spent an evening with them before the clips of the interview were aired on Thursday.

Many referred to the idea that the pair had travelled all the way to Salisbury just to see its cathedral.

The New York Times reported Thursday that Russian intelligence agencies have in recent years identified and located multiple Russians who were CIA informants and now live in the USA under a secret agency program.

The newspaper Vedomosti headlined its report on the broadcast: "An interview, but no information".

The two men offered a reason for their visit: "They have a famous cathedral there, Salisbury Cathedral".

Some social media users were quick to point out that numerous facts cited are also in the first paragraphs of Salisbury Cathedral's Wikipedia entry.

"What a bold move, to rely on Sunday trains to get themselves to Salisbury and back and then to Heathrow", one Twitter user noted, in reference to Britain's unreliable weekend rail services. They added that they would like to receive an apology from British officials.

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"The Spy Who Went Home Because It Was Cold", another wrote. When you go through customs, they check all your belongings.

They reeled off facts about the "beautiful city" and the friends' recommendations that had inspired them to visit.

One "review" was left by a user coming under alias "Novickek" from "Moscow, Russia", who appeared to be way more blunt and quite toxic.

"We always go together through the same corridor". We don't know who actually poisoned the Skripals.

United Kingdom authorities believe the pair smeared the highly toxic chemical Novichok on a door handle at the Wiltshire home of former GRU officer Sergei Skripal, leaving Mr Skripal and his daughter Yulia critically ill.

Downing Street on Thursday called the RT interview "an insult to the public's intelligence".

Simonyan asked the men during the exchange whether they are GRU officers.

March 22 - Nick Bailey, the police officer injured in the attack, is released from hospital.

"The Police and Crown Prosecution Service have identified these men as the prime suspects in relation to the attack in Salisbury".

In a message that was published on the website, TripAdvisor said: 'Due to a recent event that has attracted media attention and has caused an influx of review submissions that do not describe the first-hand experience, we have temporarily suspended publishing new reviews for this listing. He gave it to his girlfriend, who later died.