Russian Federation expels 23 British diplomats in row over spy poisoning

The British Embassy in Moscow

The British Embassy in Moscow

Relations between Britain and Russian Federation plunged Wednesday to a chilly level not seen since the Cold War as Prime Minister Theresa May expelled 23 diplomats, severed high-level contacts and vowed both open and covert action against Kremlin meddling after the poisoning of a former spy.

Britain says Russian Federation is responsible for using the Novichok nerve agent against Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the English city of Salisbury.

Moscow missed May's deadline to provide a "credible" response to allegations of its involvement in poisoning former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Salisbury.

The White House said it shared Britain's assessment that Russia was responsible and supported the decision to expel Russian diplomats.

"Those measures should sober British politicians up", Dzhabarov said, "primarily Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson, who dared to make an offensive statement regarding the head of a great state, virtually accusing him of ordering the poisoning of Skripal".

Earlier on Wednesday Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russian Federation was in no way connected to the poisoning and remained open to cooperating with a British investigation into the case.

Britain braced for a showdown with Russian Federation after a midnight deadline set by Prime Minister Theresa May expired without an explanation from Moscow about how a Soviet-era nerve toxin was used to strike down Sergei Skripal.

MI6 double agent Skripal and his daughter Yulia, 33, were found collapsed on a bench in Salisbury and remain in a critical condition.

"We are profoundly disappointed at this development", the British Council said in a statement.

The Russian Foreign Ministry ordered the 23 diplomats to leave within a week.

What now seems most likely is that the Salisbury atrocity was part of a wider campaign against Russian nationals in Britain who Putin personally regards as traitors or enemies.

Eagles releasing DE Vinny Curry
Although fans are excited for the move, it seems like a lot of money to allocate for someone who averages 3.67 sacks per season. Had Curry been on Philadelphia's roster Sunday, $5 million of his $9 million base salary for 2018 would have been guaranteed.

May said Russia's use of a chemical weapon was "an affront to the prohibition on the use of chemical weapons".

Britain, the US, Germany and France jointly called on Russian Federation on Thursday to explain the attack.

Meanwhile, Russia is to expel 23 British diplomats as the row over the attack on the Skripals continues.

British Prime Minister Theresa May this week expelled 23 Russian diplomats and severed high-level contacts over the poisoning of ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia.

The Kremlin says British accusations that Russian President Vladimir Putin was involved in a nerve agent attack in England are shocking and unforgivable, TASS news agency reports.

British Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson sparked particular outrage in Moscow with his blunt comment on Thursday that "Russia should go away, it should shut up".

In a radio show this morning, the Conservative chair of the foreign affairs, Tom Tugendhat said, "It's hardly surprising that they've chose to retaliate by expelling 23 people".

Russia's Defence Ministry said he was an "intellectual impotent" and Mr Lavrov said he probably lacked education.

Britain's ambassador to Russia says the nerve agent poisoning of a former Russian double agent and his daughter in Britain was an attack on worldwide values.

The Kremlin spokesman reiterated that the film "Putin" could not be aired ahead of the election, so it was released on the internet, "which is also rather good, because, as far as we know, the internet can reach just as many people as television can".

When asked what Britain should do next, Tom Tugendhat, a Conservative lawmaker and chair of the foreign affairs select committee, told the BBC: "I think what we got to do is focus entirely on the Putin regime, the Putin family and the Putin henchmen, and focus on their money, much of which is hidden in Western Europe".

Latest News