British PM Johnson urges Russia to 'explain' what happened to Navalny

WION Web Team
New Delhi, India Published: Sep 02, 2020, 10:59 PM(IST)

Britain Prime Minister Boris Johnson Photograph:( AFP )

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British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday called Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s poisoning "outrageous" and urged Moscow to "explain" what had happened

British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Wednesday called Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny’s poisoning "outrageous" and urged Moscow to "explain" what had happened.

"We have seen first-hand the deadly consequences of Novichok in the UK," Johnson said on Twitter.

In Pics: Mysterious Russian poison cases: Radioactive polonium, toxic nerve agent to chemicals

"The Russian government must now explain what happened to Mr Navalny - we will work with international partners to ensure justice is done," Johnson said.

In a separate statement, Britain's Foreign Minister Dominic Raab said that Russia "must tell the truth" about what had occurred.

"The Russian government has a clear case to answer. It must tell the truth about what happened to Mr Navalny," Raab added.

German government on Wednesday said that based on the tests performed on Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, it is likely that he was poisoned with a Soviet-era nerve agent called “Novichok”.

Fiercest critic

One of Russian President Vladimir Putin's fiercest critics, Navalny fell sick on a flight from Siberia to Moscow on August 20, after which he was taken to a hospital in the city of Omsk in Siberia following an emergency landing.

As international pressure mounted, he was shifted to Berlin's Charite hospital. Doctors had claimed last week that he was most possibly poisoned.

Steffen Seibert, the spokesperson to German Chancellor Angela Merkel on Wednesday said that after testing by a military laboratory, it was ascertained that “a chemical nerve agent from the Novichok group" was used on Navalny.

In Pics: The curious case of Russian Kremlin critics who were allegedly poisoned

Novichok was notoriously famous during the Soviet era, and was also used to poison former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter who were then in Britain.

The Kremlin on Wednesday said that Russia was ready to cooperate with Germany over the alleged poisoning of Alexei Navalny.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said, "In general we confirm that we are ready and have an interest in full cooperation and exchange of data on this topic with Germany”.

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