UK Police Investigate Woman's Death 8 Days After Touching Russian Nerve Agent

Evarado Alatorre
Julio 12, 2018

British police are scouring sections of Salisbury and Amesbury in southwest England, searching for a container feared to be contaminated with traces of the deadly nerve agent Novichok.

"This bad news has only served to strengthen our resolve to identify and bring to justice the person or persons responsible for what I can only describe as an outrageous, reckless and barbaric act", said Neil Basu, chief of the Metropolitan Police's counter-terrorism division. Rowley remains critically ill.

Russia, which is now hosting the football World Cup, has denied any involvement in the Skripal case and suggested the British security services had carried out the attack to stoke anti-Moscow hysteria.

Russian Federation denies any involvement in the Skripals' case. Since this is still early in the investigation, police have not released many details about how and where the two latest victims were poisoned.

Sturgess collapsed on the morning of June 30 and was taken to hospital.

John Glen, the Conservative Party legislator for the region, said the new poisoning has threatened an economic rebound from the slowdown caused by the attack on the Skripals.

Three other men who also travelled in the van have been tested and show no signs of having been exposed to Novichok, Mr Basu said.

He added: "I would like to reassure the public that we are working very closely with the Counter Terrorism Network.we are securing the locations".

Amber Rudd, Mr Javid's predecessor who resigned in April, had previously visited the site in Salisbury where Russian ex-spy Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with Novichok.

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The incident comes just months after Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were affected by the nerve agent in Salisbury, though both survived.

Though it has not been established whether this incident is linked to the attack on the Skripals, Mr Basu said that theory was the "main line of inquiry".

"We have told our British colleagues that they are playing with fire and they will be sorry", he said.

Speaking after Sturgess passed away on July 8, Basu told the media he "cannot offer any guarantees" and urged people to follow Public Health England advice to avoid picking up discarded containers or syringes.

Salisbury is in the county of Wiltshire, where Rowley and Sturgess both also lived.

"Today is the day we hoped would never come", said Wiltshire Police Chief Constable Kier Pritchard. There were only two options, she argued: either the Russians had conducted the attempted assassination, or the nerve agent had fallen into the hands of a third party.

But, they say, "it is important that the investigation is led by the evidence available and the facts alone".

Mr Deputy Speaker, it is with profound sadness that I must inform the House that one of the patients - Dawn Sturgess - died last night at Salisbury District Hospital.

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