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Spy poisoning: Russia sells "unfriendly" Western diplomats



  Embassy of Denmark, Moscow

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AFP

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Moscow has called Western expulsions "unfriendly"

Russia has ordered the expulsion of more diplomats from Western countries with a tick-for-tat response to the poisoning of an ex-spy in the UK.

Ambassadors were called to be informed of the measure the next day Russia expelled 60 US diplomats and closed the consulate of St. Petersburg.

The move came after the United Kingdom blamed Russia for the thrill attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia on March 4 in Salisbury, England.

Russia denies any role in the incident.

Mr. Skripal remains in a critical but stable state. Yulia's condition should improve.

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EPA / Julia Skripal / Facebook

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Sergei Skripal, 66, and his daughter Yulia, 33, have been in hospital since the attack

UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres warned on Thursday that the world risks "coming to a situation that is very much in line with what we lived during the Cold War".

Who is ordered?

29 countries expelled 1

45 Russian officials in solidarity with Britain – and NATO also sent 10 Russians from Belgium.

The US expelled the largest single number – 60 diplomats – and closed the Russian Consulate General in Seattle.

Russia said Thursday that 58 US diplomats in Moscow and two in Yekaterinburg are personae non gratae.

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AFP

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Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russia would respond "in the same way"

The US said they had awaited the step and warned that it could take further action.

On Friday, Western ambassadors of the countries that drove the Russians out were called to learn of Moscow's retaliation.

As details became known about new evictions, the United Kingdom was informed that it had its workforce in Russia at the same number of Russians in the UK. Both countries already have 23 employees.

How does Russia argue?

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has accused "the harsh pressure of the United States and the United Kingdom under the pretext of the so-called Skripal case".

He reiterated Russian demands for consular access to Yulia Skripal – a Russian citizen.

Russia is also seeking a meeting with leaders of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to "investigate the truth". 19659016] What do we know about the nerve agent?

Britain says that the chemical used in the attack was part of a group of neurotoxins developed by the Soviet Union under the name Novichok.

The OPCW has sent a team to the UK

The results are expected to last at least two weeks, says the government

The police said the Skripals were first in contact with the nerve enzyme at Mr. Skripal's house Salisbury, With the Highest (19659007) After the Salisbury incident, British Prime Minister Theresa May announced a series of sanctions, including the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats allegedly secret service agents.

The Kremlin responded with the expulsion of an Equal Number of British Diplomats and closure of the British Council

British security adviser Mark Sedwill said on Thursday in Washington that expulsions by western countries aim to destroy covert Russian intelligence services.


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