Russians charged in poisoning say they visited UK as tourists

14 September, 2018, 05:59 | Author: Rafael Roberts
  • Salisbury Cathedral which the prime suspects in the Novichok nerve agent claimed to have been visiting

British prosecutors said last week they had "sufficient evidence" to charge the two Russian nationals in connection with the attack on March 4.

Questioned on whether the pair were civilians, Mr Putin replied: "Of course they are civilians".

A United Kingdom government spokesperson said the United Kingdom is "clear" that Petrov and Boshirov are agents with Russian military intelligence and slammed the interview as "lies and blatant fabrications".

The Skripals and a police officer fell seriously ill. One of the bystanders later died from the Soviet-era nerve agent after she discovered it in a park disguised in a perfume bottle.

Petrov said that on their first trip to Salisbury, they were unable to make it from the train station to the cathedral - about 800 meters (half a mile) - because of snow and slush.

Two men who identified themselves as Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov told Russian state-funded news channel RT they travelled to the city of Wiltshire after friends recommended it.

"There's the famous Salisbury cathedral".

Boshirov did not react to the interviewer's request to show the pictures they took on that trip, only saying that he found Salisbury Cathedral "very handsome". It's famous for it's 123m spire. "The one, the first ever created in the world that's still working", Boshirov said. "Today - just as we have seen throughout - they have responded with obfuscation and lies", the Foreign Office said in a statement.

A spokesman for Theresa May condemned the lies and "blatant fabrications" in the interview, adding... Russian Federation kicked out a similar number of those countries' diplomatic envoys.

The two men had some physical similarities to the men shown in British police images. They admitted to visiting Salisbury twice, once on March 3 and again on the fourth. Those details are not common knowledge for most Britons, but they are available on the Wikipedia page of the cathedral. She said the interview was recorded on Wednesday evening.

Two men named as suspects in the poisoning of a Russian ex-spy in the United Kingdom claim they were merely tourists.

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The two men denied having Novichok or any poison with them.

She asked Petrov and Boshirov what they were doing in the United Kingdom, and the two men claimed that they were told the small town of Salisbury was just a nice place to visit.

Their interviewer did not ask them to account for Novichok traces which British police said were found in their hotel room. We know who they are, we have found them already.

They appear somewhat uncomfortable in the interview.

"I'm frightened, I'm scared".

"When your life [is] turned upside down, you don't know what to do and where to go". We do not wish to do that.

The TV station recorded the interview on Wednesday evening, just hours after President Vladimir Putin said Russian Federation had identified the men sought by Britain and urged them to address the media.

Putin appeared to suggest they should tell their story publicly. British politicians immediately called the interview "not credible".

"It could be a way of signaling defiance to the United Kingdom government, effectively saying, "There's nothing you can do about this", he said. He said they were innocent and "nothing criminal" about them, apparently contradicting accusations by Scotland Yard that they were agents of Russian military intelligence.

Putin's defiant stance echoed the Kremlin's approach to the 2006 case when his spies were accused of murdering former Russian security officer Alexander Litvinenko in London using radioactive polonium.

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