Novichok used in Skripal attack: Chemical weapons watchdog


"We have now discharged Yulia", Blanshard said.

"The chemical weapons watchdog did not explicitly name Novichok in its published summary, say where the poison may have come from or assign blame for the attack".

Sergei and Yulia Skripal were found unconscious on a bench near one of the shopping centers in the British Salisbury on March 4.

The minister said the United Kingdom had asked the OPCW to publish the executive summary of its findings in the "interest of transparency" and called a session of the OPCW Executive Council next Wednesday to discuss next steps.

It added that "the toxic chemical was of high purity". The objective was only to confirm the identification of the nerve agent used.

The U.K. investigation by chemical weapons experts at the nearby military research center of Porton Down, along with evidence collected by British security services, found the chemical used in the attack was a type of Soviet-era nerve agent called a Novichok agent.

It did not however provide any evidence on where the nerve agent may have originated from or back up Britain's claims that Russian Federation was to blame.

The British Foreign Office said it had asked the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to release an executive summary of its findings at midday. The purity makes it hard to tell when the agent was manufactured, since without impurities it does not degrade over time.

Britain says scientific analysis of the poison is only one of the factors that has led it to blame Russian Federation.

The watchdog did not blame Russian Federation for the attack nor did it name the specific chemical agent used.

Yulia Skripal and her father Sergei Skripal, a former Russian spy. The Kremlin has consistently denied any involvement.

The tests were carried out by four independent laboratories affiliated with OPCW and samples were transported under a "full chain of custody", the report said.

"There can be no doubt what was used and there remains no alternative explanation about who was responsible". She said she had declined an offer of assistance from the Russian Embassy.

In a statement issued through British police on Wednesday, Yulia Skripal said she did not now want any help from the embassy, adding: "I am safe and feeling better as time goes by".

"Until that time, I want to stress that no one speaks for me, or for my father, but ourselves", she said.

She had been released from the hospital this week, while Sergei Skripal stays hospitalized.

"We'd really like to understand what exactly the British aspect did to adhere to its global obligation under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations as well as the Allied Consular Convention, and that which were the reasons for this a unfounded conclusion", the embassy explained. "At the moment, I don't wish to avail myself of these solutions, however should I modify my own mind I know just how to contact them".

"The world, while having no opportunity to interact with them, will have every reason to see this as an abduction of the two Russian nationals or at least as their isolation", a spokesman for the Russian embassy in London said.