Britain requests UN Security Council meeting on OPCW report into Salisbury poisoning


Sergei and Yulia Skripal were found unconscious on a bench near one of the shopping centers in the British Salisbury on March 4.

Theresa May has said that United Kingdom military experts at Porton Down found that they were poisoned by Novichok, a nerve agent developed by Russia, and that the only plausible explanation was that the Russian state was responsible.

Following the OPCW report published Thursday, the U.K. called for a United Nations Security Council meeting over the results, which will most likely be set for next week.

Testing by four laboratories affiliated with the OPCW confirmed Britain's findings and detailed that the nerve agent was of a "high purity".

The OPCW's job was to identify the poison, not to trace its origins or assign blame.

But it did confirm Britain's analysis about the substance that had been used.

Johnson's statement came after the global chemical watchdog confirmed Britain's finding that Sergei Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a toxin of "high purity".

"The Salisbury Hospital has never confirmed that Sergei and Yulia Skripal had any symptoms of chemical poisoning and that they were treated precisely for this".

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said Thursday Russia would not accept any of the report's conclusions unless Russian officials were provided access to the ongoing investigation.

Russian Federation insists it has destroyed all of its chemical weapons and has responded angrily to suggestions that it targeted Skripal, a former intelligence officer who sold secrets to the British.

The Novichok class of nerve agents were developed in Russian Federation and their existence were first revealed in the early 1990s by a dissident scientist.

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"I am safe and feeling better as time goes by, but I am not yet strong enough to give a full interview to the media, as I one day hope to do", Yulia Skripal said in a statement released by London's Metropolitan Police.

Britain's Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson leaves after attending the weekly cabinet meeting at 10 Downing Street in London, March 20, 2018.

"There can be no doubt what was used and there remains no alternative explanation about who was responsible - only Russian Federation has the means, motive and record", he said.

However Russia, which has denied it played any role in the attack on the Skripals, said it believed the watchdog's report was part of a British operation to discredit Russia.

Juergen Hardt, foreign policy spokesman for Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives, said the report provided "certainty" that the Skripals were poisoned by Novichok.

The OPCW report states that the chemical the toxic substance was of high purity and contained nearly no impurities.

Russian Federation has denied possessing the nerve agent used, while President Vladimir Putin has said it was nonsense to think Moscow would have poisoned Skripal and his daughter.

Yulia Skripal, 33, was released from hospital on Monday, saying in a statement she was suffering from the effects of the poisoning, while her father remained seriously ill.

The findings come after Yulia Skripal rejected Russian Embassy assistance as she recovers at an undisclosed location. Zakharova also accused Britain of waging a campaign to discredit Russian Federation. This has also prevented it from acting on the use of chemical weapons in Syria.

The watchdog did not blame Russian Federation for the attack nor did it name the specific chemical agent used.

The purity of the nerve agent makes it hard to tell when the agent was manufactured, since without impurities it does not degrade over time.