OPCW Confirms Skripals Poisoned With Nerve Agent Novichok
Having completed its own investigation into the alleged poisoning of a former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia which took place in Salisbury on March 4, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons [OPCW] apparently managed to identify the toxic agent employed in the attack, according to British media.
The OPCW has confirmed that the Skripals were poisoned with Novichok nerve agent in the United Kingdom, the Sky News television channel reported Thursday.
According to the report's summary delivered by the organization's Technical Secretariat, the toxic substance was of high purity and contained almost no impurities.
"The TAV [technical assistance visit] team notes that the toxic chemical was of high purity. The latter is concluded from the almost complete absence of impurities," OPCW surmised.
The organization further added that the name and the structure of the poisonous substance are contained in the full classified report which will be available to all member states.
"Today the international chemical weapons watchdog have confirmed the findings of the United Kingdom relating to the identity of the toxic chemical used in the attempted assassination of Skripal and his daughter, and which also resulted in the hospitalization of a British police officer. That was a military grade nerve agent - a Novichok," UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson commented on this development.
The Skripals were found unconscious on March 4 on a bench at a shopping center in Salisbury. London promptly accused Moscow of orchestrating the attack with what UK experts claim was the A234 nerve agent.
Moscow, for its part, denied having any involvement in the poisoning, pointing to the lack of evidence provided by London to substantiate its accusations.
Shortly after the incident, London expelled 23 Russian diplomats, with a number of other European countries and the United States following suit.
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team