Nerve agent inspectors back UK over poisoning

Inspectors from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons have agreed with the UK findings that a nerve gas used in a poisoning in Salisbury, England over the identity of the nerve gas that was used.

RNZ: Russian spy poisoning: Nerve agent inspectors back UK

The international chemical weapons watchdog has confirmed the UK’s analysis of the type of nerve agent used in the Russian ex-spy poisoning.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons did not name the nerve agent as Novichok, but said it agreed with the UK’s findings on its identity.

UK Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson said: “There can be no doubt what was used. There remains no alternative explanation about who was responsible – only Russia has the means, motive and record.”

Mr Johnson said the UK had invited the OPCW to test the samples “to ensure strict adherence to international chemical weapons protocols”.

A team from the OPCW visited the UK on 19 March, 15 days after the Skripals were found slumped on a park bench in Salisbury and taken to hospital, along with a police officer who was among the first on the scene.

The OPCW said it received information about the medical conditions of the Skripals and Det Sgt Nick Bailey, it collected their blood samples, and it gathered samples from the site in Salisbury.

The OPCW does identify the toxic chemical by its complex formula but only in the classified report that has not been made public.

In its summary, which has been published online, the report notes the toxic chemical was of “high purity”.

The BBC’s diplomatic correspondent James Landale said: “This is understood to strengthen the argument that this substance came from Russia because it is more likely to have been created by a state actor with the capability to make the nerve agent.”

This will add weight to the pressure on Russia over the poisoning. They deny any involvement.

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13 Comments

  1. Blazer

     /  April 13, 2018

    damage control…too little ,too late…’The OPCW does identify the toxic chemical by its complex formula but only in the classified report that has not been made public.’….trust us….we know what we’re doing,no we aren’t ..lying.

    Reply
  2. Ray

     /  April 13, 2018

    If it was so pure and so very toxic, how come it was a failure.

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  April 13, 2018

      I understand there is an antidote that can be administered and presumably was.

      Reply
      • Alan Wilkinson

         /  April 13, 2018

        Purity probably refers to lack of isomers or secondary by-products and therefore indicates sophisticated refinement. It wouldn’t make much difference to effectiveness relative to dose.

        Reply
      • Ray

         /  April 13, 2018

        The whole point of nerve agents is that they are fast acing and antidotes are themselves are dangerous .
        I am not convinced as the evidence seems to boil down to the Russians had the most to gain but there are some other parties who had just as much reason to do this.
        More reading : https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Novichok_agent

        Reply
      • Blazer

         /  April 13, 2018

        they haven’t identified the ..agent..Al.

        Reply
        • Alan Wilkinson

           /  April 13, 2018

          Of course they have.

          Reply
        • High Flying Duck

           /  April 13, 2018

          Only you could take an article that specifically states:

          “The international chemical weapons watchdog has confirmed the UK’s analysis of the type of nerve agent used in the Russian ex-spy poisoning.”

          and

          “The OPCW does identify the toxic chemical by its complex formula but only in the classified report that has not been made public.”

          …and take from that that the agent has not been identified. Or are you speaking of which Russian agent utilised the chemical weapon on the Skripal’s?

          Reply
          • Blazer

             /  April 13, 2018

            it was claimed to be Novichok and the finger was pointed at…Russia.Now no mention of the ‘chemical’…or that Russia is…responsible.It’s called an about turn…an embarrassing one..for those who..swallowed the construct.NZ Govt did not.

            Reply
  3. Look at who was targeted and who would be most likely to target the victims.
    Russians murdering dissidents is rather common 15 evidently verty recent…

    Reply
  4. Gezza

     /  April 13, 2018

    About OPCW
    OPCW Headquarters Building (based in The Netherlands)
    The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons is the implementing body of the Chemical Weapons Convention (CWC), which entered into force in 1997. As of today OPCW has 192 Member States, who are working together to achieve a world free of chemical weapons.

    Our Goal
    The OPCW Member States share the collective goal of preventing chemistry from ever again being used for warfare, thereby strengthening international security. To this end, the Convention contains four key provisions:

    – destroying all existing chemical weapons under international verification by the OPCW;
    – monitoring chemical industry to prevent new weapons from re-emerging;
    – providing assistance and protection to States Parties against chemical threats; and
    – fostering international cooperation to strengthen implementation of the Convention and promote the peaceful use of chemistry.

    https://www.opcw.org/about-opcw/

    Reply

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