Number in Novichok suspect's passport file reached Russian military, says report

Pauline Gross
September 16, 2018

"The government is clear these men are officers of the Russian military intelligence service - the GRU - who used a devastatingly toxic, illegal chemical weapon on the streets of our country".

He added that "from the very beginning, Russian Federation has emphasized its desire to co-operate to clarify the circumstances of what happened in Salisbury and track down the culprits", but "the British side has strongly rejected such co-operation".

Speaking with RT editor-in-chief Margarita Simonyan, the two confirmed they were the men being shown in CCTV footage by British authorities.

"Our friends had been suggesting for a long time that we visit this wonderful town", Mr Petrov said.

They spent no more than an hour in Salisbury and returned to London after abandoning a plan to visit the Stonehenge monument because of "muddy slush" and snow in the city, Petrov said.

The two men were widely ridiculed after they claimed they had been to Salisbury to visit the city's cathedral, "famous for its 123-metre spire".

"Do you know where Skripal's house is?" asked Boshirov.

Short clips from the interview with Petrov and Boshirov (the British government believes those are fake names) were aired on RT last night around 8:30PM AEST. "But very odd to come all this way for just two days while carrying Novichok in their luggage", he tweeted.

Russian Federation has consistently denied ordering the attack, or having any knowledge of it.

Wearing sweaters and appearing uncomfortable with the questioning, the two men claimed that they travelled as tourists to Salisbury and explained that they made two trips to Salisbury after bad weather hampered their first day trip. A Russian foreign ministry official has previously said this was proof that Scotland Yard had doctored evidence.

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"We're afraid of going out, we fear for ourselves, our lives and lives of our loved ones". "So how did this happen?"

"We walked around and enjoyed this English Gothic architecture", he said.

"This was not a rogue operation", Prime Minister Theresa May told the UK Parliament last week.

FILE PHOTO: Police officers guard the cordoned off area around the home of former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal in Salisbury, Britain, April 3, 2018.

The Skripals survived being poisoned by the nerve agent Novichok, but Dawn Sturgess - a woman not connected to the original attack - died in July after being exposed to the same substance. Boshirov said. "The customs are checking everything, they would have questions as to why men have women's perfume in their luggage".

However, a European Arrest Warrant has been obtained in case they travel to the EU, and UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid has warned that the men will be caught and prosecuted if they ever step out of Russian Federation. "We didn't have it".

The interview "looks as though it was hurriedly thrown together in response to Putin's decision", said Mark Galeotti, senior researcher at the Prague-based Institute of International Relations and an expert on Russian security matters.

British police released closed-circuit television images and pictures of Petrov and Boshirov walking in Skripal's neighborhood on March 4, the day of the attack.

The accusation that they are part of the GRU, the Russian military intelligence service, was "the scariest thing" about the incident, Petrov said, according to the translation by RT.

When the interviewer asked them whether they had Novichok or any poison with them, they emphatically said no.

Other reports by GizPress

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