"Russian Interference in the 2016 United States Election”, assassinations, Boris Johnson, chemical warfare, Chemical Weapons, Cold War, Crimea, Cyber warfare, Defence, Donbas, double agent, Espionage, Europe, extra-judicial killings, Florida, France, Germany, GRU, Kaliningrad, Kaliningrad missiles, KGB, lab, Litvinenko, low dose exposure nerve agents, mafia, MI6, Military-grade nerve agent, missile attacks, Moscow, NATO, NATO Enhanced Forward Presence, Nerve agent, nerve agents, neurotransmitter, Novichok, poisoning, poisonings, police officer, Putin, Russia, Russian assassinations UK, Russian nerve agent, Russian spy, Russian State Aggression, Russian State sanctioned killings, Salisbury, sanctions, Sarin, Sergei Skripal, skin contact, Skripal, Soman, Soviet Union, spy, spy swap, threats, Treason, UK, Wiltshire, Zapad 2017
“It is now clear that Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia. This is part of a group of nerve agents known as ‘Novichok’. Based on the positive identification of this chemical agent by world-leading experts at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down; our knowledge that Russia has previously produced this agent and would still be capable of doing so; Russia’s record of conducting state-sponsored assassinations; and our assessment that Russia views some defectors as legitimate targets for assassinations; the Government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible for the act against Sergei and Yulia Skripal.
Mr Speaker, there are therefore only two plausible explanations for what happened in Salisbury on the 4th of March. Either this was a direct act by the Russian State against our country. Or the Russian government lost control of this potentially catastrophically damaging nerve agent and allowed it to get into the hands of others…
Mr Speaker, this attempted murder using a weapons-grade nerve agent in a British town was not just a crime against the Skripals. It was an indiscriminate and reckless act against the United Kingdom, putting the lives of innocent civilians at risk. And we will not tolerate such a brazen attempt to murder innocent civilians on our soil.” (Excerpted from “PM Commons statement on Salisbury incident: 12 March 2018”. See entire statement further below).
“The Russian embassy said Britain was ‘playing a dangerous game’ and warned of serious repercussions,” reported Jamie Dettmer at VOA News.
What “dangerous game“? Will Conservative Party members-officials be poisoned by Russia for taking money from Russia and then being “dishonourable” and telling the truth? That is a dangerous game! https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2018/03/12/britains-ruling-conservatives-under-pressure-to-return-russian-donations/ Why were British government officials taking money from the Russian government at all and especially after the invasion and occupation of Crimea?
And, what about this? https://miningawareness.wordpress.com/2018/03/05/the-uk-refuses-to-produce-documents-related-to-nuclear-materials-contracts-with-the-soviet-union-during-the-cold-war-citing-costs/
“British officials say they are encouraging NATO allies, including the United States, to agree to a coordinated response, depending on Russia’s response. French President Emmanuel Macron and German Chancellor Angela Merkel reportedly are sympathetic and have agreed to act in concert” (Dettmer-VOA). Can the US act independently of Russia? Don’t hold your breath, unless you are in the Trump-Putin administration(s) and then hold it for as long as you like!
“May had been expected to unveil a raft of initial retaliatory measures against Russia, but told parliament her government would wait until it had received an explanation from Moscow. The Russian ambassador, Alexander Vladimirovich Yakovenko, was summoned to Britain’s Foreign Office and told by Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson that the Kremlin had until Tuesday afternoon to respond and explain how a nerve agent the Russians developed and only they possess was used in an attack in Britain.” (Dettmer-VOA)
Apparently the Russians are better chemists than mechanical engineers, since they don’t appear able to develop anything mechanical on their own, but rather import (legally and illegally) and sometimes copy the imports. Unless, of course, someone developed Novichok for them:
Novichok “is a series of nerve agents that were developed by the Soviet Union in the 1970s and 1980s. Allegedly these are the most deadly nerve agents ever made, with some variants possibly five to eight times more potent than VX…
These agents were designed to achieve four objectives.
* To be undetectable using standard NATO chemical detection equipment;
* To defeat NATO chemical protective gear;
* To be safer to handle;
* To circumvent the Chemical Weapons Convention list of controlled precursors, classes of chemical and physical form…
Some of these agents are binary weapons, in which precursors for the nerve agents are mixed in a munition to produce the agent just prior to its use. Because the precursors are generally significantly less hazardous than the agents themselves, this technique makes handling and transporting the munitions a great deal simpler…. careless preparation or preparation by untrained individuals may produce a non-optimal agent….” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novichok_agent This last point is perhaps why the Skripals are still alive.
“Local anger in Salisbury mounted Monday after British officials warned that traces of the nerve agent used had been found in a pub and restaurant the Skripals visited. Their advice to hundreds of people who visited the same places to wash their clothes is triggering accusations of a laggardly official response.
British officials say any sanctions that Britain imposes will aim to punish the inner circle around Putin and Kremlin-tied oligarchs, who have brought property in London, educate their children in Britain’s private schools and use the British capital’s finances houses and banks to shield their money and move it around the world.” (Dettmer-VOA)
“Oral statement to Parliament
PM Commons statement on Salisbury incident: 12 March 2018
Prime Minister Theresa May updated the House of Commons about the incident in Salisbury.
Published 12 March 2018
Prime Minister’s Office, 10 Downing Street and The Rt Hon Theresa May MP
12 March 2018
With permission, Mr Speaker, I would like to update the House on the incident in Salisbury – and the steps we are taking to investigate what happened and to respond to this reckless and despicable act.
Last week my Rt Hon Friends, the Foreign and Home Secretaries, set out the details of events as they unfolded on Sunday the 4th of March.
I am sure the whole House will want to once again pay tribute to the bravery and professionalism of our emergency services and armed forces in responding to this incident, as well as the doctors and nurses who are now treating those affected.
Our thoughts, in particular, are with Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey who remains in a serious but stable condition. In responding to this incident, he exemplified the duty and courage that define our emergency services; and in which our whole nation takes the greatest pride.
Mr Speaker, I want to pay tribute to the fortitude and calmness with which people in Salisbury have responded to these events and to thank all those who have come forward to assist the police with their investigation.
This incident has, of course, caused considerable concern across the community. Following the discovery of traces of nerve agent in Zizzi’s restaurant and The Mill pub, the Chief Medical Officer issued further precautionary advice. But as Public Health England have made clear, the risk to public health is low.
Mr Speaker, I share the impatience of this House and the country at large to bring those responsible to justice – and to take the full range of appropriate responses against those who would act against our country in this way.
But as a nation that believes in justice and the rule of law, it is essential that we proceed in the right way – led not by speculation but by the evidence.
That is why we have given the police the space and time to carry out their investigation properly.
Hundreds of officers have been working around the clock – together with experts from our armed forces – to sift and assess all the available evidence; to identify crime scenes and decontamination sites and to follow every possible lead to find those responsible.
That investigation continues and we must allow the police to continue with their work.
Mr Speaker, this morning I chaired a meeting of the National Security Council in which we considered the information so far available. As is normal, the Council was updated on the assessment and intelligence picture, as well as the state of the investigation.
It is now clear that Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia.
This is part of a group of nerve agents known as ‘Novichok’.
Based on the positive identification of this chemical agent by world-leading experts at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down; our knowledge that Russia has previously produced this agent and would still be capable of doing so; Russia’s record of conducting state-sponsored assassinations; and our assessment that Russia views some defectors as legitimate targets for assassinations; the Government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible for the act against Sergei and Yulia Skripal.
Mr Speaker, there are therefore only two plausible explanations for what happened in Salisbury on the 4th of March.
Either this was a direct act by the Russian State against our country.
Or the Russian government lost control of this potentially catastrophically damaging nerve agent and allowed it to get into the hands of others.
This afternoon my Rt Hon Friend the Foreign Secretary has summoned the Russian Ambassador to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and asked him to explain which of these two possibilities it is – and therefore to account for how this Russian-produced nerve agent could have been deployed in Salisbury against Mr Skripal and his daughter.
My Rt Hon Friend has stated to the Ambassador that the Russian Federation must immediately provide full and complete disclosure of the Novichok programme to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.
And he has requested the Russian Government’s response by the end of tomorrow.
Mr Speaker, this action has happened against a backdrop of a well-established pattern of Russian State aggression.
Russia’s illegal annexation of Crimea was the first time since the Second World War that one sovereign nation has forcibly taken territory from another in Europe.
Russia has fomented conflict in the Donbas, repeatedly violated the national airspace of several European countries, and mounted a sustained campaign of cyber espionage and disruption. This has included meddling in elections, and hacking the Danish Ministry of Defence and the Bundestag, among many others.
During his recent State of the Union address, President Putin showed video graphics of missile launches, flight trajectories and explosions, including the modelling of attacks on the United States with a series of warheads impacting in Florida.
While the extra-judicial killing of terrorists and dissidents outside Russia were given legal sanction by the Russian Parliament in 2006.
And of course Russia used radiological substances in its barbaric assault on Mr Litvenenko. We saw promises to assist the investigation then, but they resulted in denial and obfuscation – and the stifling of due process and the rule of law. Mr Speaker, following Mr Litvinenko’s death we expelled Russian diplomats, suspended security co-operation, broke off bilateral plans on visas, froze the assets of the suspects and put them on international extradition lists. And these measures remain in place.
Furthermore our commitment to collective defence and security through NATO remains as strong as ever in the face of Russian behaviour.
Indeed our armed forces have a leading role in NATO’s Enhanced Forward Presence with British troops leading a multinational battlegroup in Estonia.
We have led the way in securing tough sanctions against the Russian economy.
And we have at all stages worked closely with our allies and we will continue to do so.
We must now stand ready to take much more extensive measures.
Mr Speaker, on Wednesday we will consider in detail the response from the Russian State.
Should there be no credible response, we will conclude that this action amounts to an unlawful use of force by the Russian State against the United Kingdom.
And I will come back to this House and set out the full range of measures that we will take in response.
Mr Speaker, this attempted murder using a weapons-grade nerve agent in a British town was not just a crime against the Skripals.
It was an indiscriminate and reckless act against the United Kingdom, putting the lives of innocent civilians at risk.
And we will not tolerate such a brazen attempt to murder innocent civilians on our soil.
I commend this Statement to the House.
Published 12 March 2018”
© Crown copyright/ Parliamentary copyright OGL: https://www.gov.uk/government/speeches/pm-commons-statement-on-salisbury-incident-12-march-2018 https://www.nationalarchives.gov.uk/doc/open-government-licence/version/3/ (Emphasis our own. It is Open Government licence and says Crown copyright at the page bottom, but since the speech was before Parliament, it should be Parliamentary Copyright, as well.)
If she objects to the invasion of Crimea, then why was the Conservative Party taking money from Russian oligarchs and even the Russian government?
“British PM: ‘Highly Likely’ Russia Behind Attack on Former Spy” by Jamie Dettmer, Last Updated: March 12, 2018 1:55 PM, VOA News https://www.voanews.com/a/british-prime-minister-russia-poisoning-spy/4294683.html
“UK’s May says ‘highly likely’ Russia behind nerve attack on spy
Posted:Mon, 12 Mar 2018 16:15:31 -0400
LONDON (Reuters) – British Prime Minister Theresa May said on Monday it was “highly likely” that Moscow was responsible for the poisoning in England of Russian former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter using a military-grade nerve agent“. http://feeds.reuters.com/~r/Reuters/worldNews/~3/1bjf1wsoJg0/uks-may-says-highly-likely-russia-behind-nerve-attack-on-spy-idUSKCN1GO0MS