Britain will demand from Russia to extradite two Russians

Erika Holt
August 9, 2018

Britain intends to request the extradition of two Russian agents believed to have been involved in the Novichok poisoning of a Russian former double agent and his daughter in England earlier this year, according to the Guardian newspaper. The British investigation earlier reported that two of the alleged poisoner had to flee to Russian Federation.

The request will reignite the simmering diplomatic row with Russian Federation, which is certain to reject it, prompting another round of tit-for-tat diplomatic expulsions.

British investigators suspect two Russians are behind the Novichok attacks, with The Guardian reporting that The Crown Prosecution Service has prepared the extradition request and has completed the process and is ready to file. "It's nearly a rerun of the situation", The Guardian quoted a government source as saying.

In 2007, President Vladimir Putin rejected an extradition request for two Russians suspected of the assassination of the former FSB officer Alexander Litvinenko in London using radioactive polonium.

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They were both found unconscious on a bench in a shopping centre after being exposed to novichok - they were initially thought to have been intoxicated. Moscow refused to extradite Russians in accordance with the Constitution. One died days afterwards. And the query would worsen the diplomatic row between Britain and Russian Federation.

After the attack on the Skripals, allies in Europe and the United States sided with Britain's view of the attack and ordered the biggest expulsion of Russian diplomats since the height of the Cold War. Moscow has repeatedly denied any involvement and accused the British intelligence agencies of staging the attack to stoke anti-Russian hysteria.

Police believe the Novichok was smeared on the door of Sergei Skripal's house and perhaps discarded in a container that Sturgess's boyfriend Charlie Rowley then picked up.

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