Moscow’s FM rejects UK deadline for response on nerve agent attack

World Today

Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov is rejecting Britain’s ultimatum to respond to poisoning allegations against Moscow.

Lavrov warned the U.K. that it is the one breaking international law. CGTN’s Dan Ashby reports from Moscow.

How did a Russian chemical weapon cause havoc and threaten lives on British streets? Britain’s question to Russia has been met with more questions-thrown right back.

Russia’s Foreign Minister has accused the U.K. of breaking international law, by not allowing their experts to examine the alleged Russian nerve agent used in the attack. “So, before issuing ultimatums to report before the British government within 24 hours it is better to follow your own obligations in accordance with the international law, in this case with the Chemical Weapons Convention. And, in general, speaking about manners, it necessary to remember that the era of colonialism is a thing of the past,” said Lavrov.

He was responding to the U.K. Prime Minister’s demand that the Kremlin explain how retired Russian spy, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter Yulia, were attacked in Salisbury, England with a nerve agent identified as Russian-made and military-grade.

Even Russian analysts said the situation doesn’t look good for the Kremlin. “We think, based on available information, we think that it was most probably Russian authorities, because only the Russian authorities know how to produce such a poison,” explained Ruslan Leviev from the Conflict Intelligence Team.

But in Russia, there are also accusations that this is disinformation, orchestrated by the U.K. to discredit the country hosting the Fifa World Cup. “I do not have any doubts that certainly it is a well-planned hysteria, a prepared PR campaign which is being run according to the tried and tested scenarios,” accused Andrey Lugovoy, a former Russian spy.

It now looks more than likely the two countries will only fall out further. The British government is threatening Russia with a robust response if it does not get an answer, but there are no answers forthcoming.

The Kremlin denies any involvement and has met outrage with outrage. The only thing we know now for sure is that UK and Russian relations are about to get worse.