United Kingdom says Russian Federation spied on ex-double agent, his daughter before poisoning

Sergei Skripal and daughter Yulia were poisoned

AFP Getty Images ATTACK Russia has denied any involvement in the poisoning which sparked a huge investigation

Russian intelligence agencies have been spying on former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter for at least five years, a top United Kingdom security official has said.

Vil Mirzayanov, who led counter-intelligence for the former Soviet Union's military and helped develop novichok, told The Daily Mail the chemical "causes you convulsions and you can't breathe and after that you die, if you get enough of a dose of it".

"In the interest of transparency, and because unlike the Russians we have nothing to hide", Johnson added, "we have asked the OPCW to publish the executive summary for all to see and to circulate the full report to all state parties of the OPCW, including Russia". The amateur, in his opinion, could not do this.

Investigators at the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons confirmed British findings that the Skripals were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent but didn't say who was responsible.

"We know what's in the Russian playbook, kompromat (embarrassing information) type material, we're all prepared for that".

In a letter to the head of Nato, Sir Mark Sedwill also said that Moscow had an assassination programme based around nerve agents that included attacking a victim by smearing poison on a door handle.

Poisoning of the Skripals: Ex-double-agent Skripal and his daughter were found slumped over in public in Salisbury after apparently being poisoned.

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Russian Federation has vehemently denied any allegations of involvement in the incident.

The government of Prime Minister Theresa May expelled 23 Russian diplomats in retaliation and called on ir global allies to follow in ir footsteps.

Sergei Skripal remains seriously ill in hospital. The embassy posted on Twitter on Tuesday: "We need urgent proof that what is being done to her is done on her own free will".

A day earlier, Yulia Skripal, in a statement released on her behalf by Scotland Yard, declined what she called a "kindly" offer of assistance from the Russian Embassy in London.

In his letter, Sir Mark set out why the Government believes that only Russian Federation has the "technical means, operational experience and the motive" to carry out such an attack.

President Donald Trump warned Russia this week of an impending missile strike against its ally Syrian President Bashar Assad over the alleged use of chemical weapons against his own people, although the president subsequently walked back denunciations of Russian President Vladimir Putin for backing Assad.

Russian Federation denies the British claims about Novichok, saying that it completed the destruction of all its Soviet-era chemical weapons arsenals previous year under worldwide oversight.

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