The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

Russian nerve-poisoning suspects speak out

by Onize Ohikere
Posted 9/13/18, 11:06 am

Two Russian men charged with using a nerve agent against a former Russian spy and his daughter claimed Thursday in a television interview that they were in Salisbury, England, as tourists at the time of the poisoning. Their first public appearance comes a day after Russian President Vladimir Putin said the suspects were civilians with no criminal records. Britain blamed the Russian intelligence agency for the March attack that poisoned Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. British prosecutors charged Ruslan Boshirov and Alexander Petrov with the poisoning and released CCTV footage of the two men in Skripal’s neighborhood on the day of the attack.

Boshirov and Petrov told the government-run RT news channel they were visiting the Salisbury Cathedral. The men said they neither knew Skripal nor worked as Russian agents. “The whole situation is an incredible, fatal, coincidence, and that’s that,” Petrov said.

The British government in a statement late Thursday restated its stance that the Russian government is lying about the attack: “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.”

Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Onize Ohikere

Onize is a reporter for WORLD Digital based in Abuja, Nigeria.

Read more from this writer


  • Laura W
    Posted: Thu, 09/13/2018 07:55 pm

    A coincidence, they say? What kind of coincidence ends with people getting poisoned by a highly deadly and illegal nerve agent?