Russia’s UN Envoy Demands Proof Of Moscow’s Involvement In UK Nerve Agent Incident

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During an emergency meeting of the United Nations Security Council over the poisoning of Sergei Skripal, Russia’s Ambassador to the UN called the UK’s allegations against Moscow”completely unacceptable”

According to Russia’s UN Envoy, the UK is dragging the Sergei Skripal case to UN rather than addressing the relevant international body in the Hague as it is scared of a professional probe

He has demanded proof of Russia’s involvement into the incident in Salisbury, saying most of the UK’s claims are in the form of “highly likely”. He also asked members of UNSC to think who would benefit from these accusations.

“We were given 24 hours to confess to a crime,” he said.”We do not speak the language of ultimatums.” He added that Russia asked for samples of the substance used to assist in a joint investigation, but the request was refused.

Sputnik news reports:

“The Russian Federation thinks it is completely unacceptable to launch unjustified accusations as contained in the letter from [UK Prime Minister] Theresa May dated 13 March to the secretary-general of the United Nations,” Nebenzya said. “We demand that material proof be provided of the allegedly found Russian trace in this high-resonance event. Without this, stating that there is incontrovertible truth is not something that we can take into account.”

He went on to say that the nerve agent that poisoned Skripal could have come from the UK, and called for the UN to unseal the contents of the meeting to the public. “We have nothing to fear, nothing to hide,” he remarked.

The 66-year-old Skripal was poisoned in Salisbury, England, alongside his daughter Yulia on March 4. The UK claimed that the two were poisoned with the nerve agent Novichok, which was first synthesized in the Soviet Union in the 1970s. Twenty-one people were sent to hospital in the incident.

May formally accused Russia of poisoning Skripal on March 12 and threatened a series of punitive measures, including the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats on March 14.

Moscow has denied culpability in the poisoning and has offered to assist in the investigation. Nebenzya’s deputy reiterated the effort.

Also during the UNSC meeting, US ambassador Nikki Haley echoed the British charges. “The United States believes Russia is responsible for the attack on two people in the United Kingdom using a military-grade nerve agent,” Haley said.

“The credibility of this [UN Security] Council will not survive if we fail to hold Russia accountable,” she added.

The French envoy, Francois Delattre, said that Paris had “full confidence” in the UK’s investigation. “I would like to express to the United Kingdom full support and complete solidarity of France,” Delattre said.



Niamh Harris
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