Published: Sun, March 18, 2018
World Media | By Shelia Harmon

Russian Federation expels 23 British diplomats in retaliation

Russian Federation expels 23 British diplomats in retaliation

The British Council is a cultural institute with artistic, language and educational programs.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said it was giving the 23 British diplomats one week to leave the country.

Russia's Defence Ministry said he was an "intellectual impotent".

Earlier today, the British ambassador to Moscow was summoned for urgent talks with Russia's foreign ministry.

Ms. May said the expulsion of the 23 diplomats, identified as undeclared intelligence officers, was the biggest single expulsion for over 30 years and would degrade Russian intelligence capabilities in Britain for years to come.

Skripal, a former colonel in the GRU, who betrayed dozens of Russian agents to British intelligence, and his daughter have been critically ill since March 4, when they were found unconscious on a bench. The pair remain in critical condition.

British Ambassador to Russia Laurie Bristow arrives at the Russian Foreign Ministry in Moscow, Russia, March 17, 2018.

Britain has written to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in The Hague, which monitors compliance with the global convention outlawing the use of such weapons, to obtain independent verification of the substance used.

It said Britain's "hostile measures" were "an unprecedentedly crude provocation". The Russian reaction would be made in line with its national interests, he said, and will be announced "very soon".

" Russia's response doesn't change the facts of the matter", said the Foreign Office.

"This follows the action we have taken, alongside other measures, to dismantle the Russian espionage network operating in the United Kingdom as a outcome of the attempted assassination of two people here in Britain using a nerve agent". It is an assault on the United Kingdom's sovereignty and any such use by a state party is a clear violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention and a breach of global law.

At U.N. headquarters, deputy spokesman Farhan Haq said Secretary-General Antonio Guterres was not in a position to attribute responsibility for the attack, but "he strongly condemns the use of any nerve agent or chemical weapons and hopes that the incident will be thoroughly investigated". United Kingdom officials believe the Skripals were exposed to a nerve agent known as Novichok that was developed in Russian Federation.

President Vladimir Putin's spokesman on Wednesday rejected Britain's "unfounded accusations" and "ultimatums" over the poisoning of a former double agent in Britain. "Any reference or mentioning of our President is nothing else but shocking and unpardonable diplomatic misconduct".

Russian Federation has complained that Britain has failed to provide any evidence of its involvement in the Salisbury attack and has said it is shocked and bemused by the allegations.

In a dramatic twist Friday, London's Metropolitan Police said that the death of Russian businessman Nikolai Glushkov, who was found dead Monday in his London home, was now being treated as murder. British police said they were treating Glushkov's death as unexplained, but did not think it was linked to the attack on the Skripals.

Britain said the assistance in that case was not enough, and in 2016, a judge-led inquiry concluded that Putin had probably approved Litvinenko's murder, something Moscow denies.

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