Russian Official Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova commented on the reports that the experts from the British military laboratory in Porton Down were unable to determine where the “Novichok” gas that poisoned Sergei and Yulia Skripal was produced.
“I wouldn’t be surprised if now or tomorrow Theresa May and that entire brilliant team said that all their statements in parliament and knocking together of world coalitions are the result of Russian hackers hacking Disney’s animation studio, and that they did not actually make up all of this nonsense,” Zakharova wrote on Facebook.
She explained that she was referring to the statement by the British experts on the origins of Novichok.
“What am I talking about? About the fact that the leader of the Porton Down laboratory just reported that the scientists were unable to determine whether Russia was the country of origin of the Novichok nerve paralysis agent used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia,” the Foreign Ministry spokeswoman added.
According to her, the experts refused to acknowledge that Novichok is actually a “western classification”.
“And also about the fact that the British Foreign Ministry just said that it has decided that Russia is guilty based on suspicions. And, of course, about the fact that the Porton Down laboratory has so far declined to confirm whether they produced the substance with the western classification Novichok,” Zakharova wrote.
She also announced a “unique story” at a press briefing that will take place on April 4.
“What will they all say then? Will they continue to lie, to evade, to shift responsibility to others? Why? Because this is not the first time they are doing this...” Zakharova resumed.
Russian President Vladimir Putin said that roughly 20 countries would be capable of producing Novichok. He made a statement to this effect after talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, Interfax reports.
“According to international experts, roughly 20 countries could produce such nerve-paralysis agents,” Putin said, and mentioned that he himself had learned about the incident from the media.
The Russian president emphasized that the origin of the substance has not yet been determined, and it has not been demonstrated that it was produced in Russia.
“It was just reported to me that the general director of the laboratory in Porton Down, which is eight kilometers from the place where the incident took place, told Sky News in an interview that his laboratory staff have been unable to determine the country of origin of this nerve-paralysis agent, and they cannot identify the country of origin, they cannot even say that this substance was produced in the Russian Federation,” Putin remarked.
Earlier, British experts from the military laboratory in Porton Down reported that they had not been able to determine the providence of the Novichok.