Swedish and French laboratories confirm Russian opposition leader Navalny was poisoned with Novichok nerve agent

The German government said on Monday that two other European laboratories had independently confirmed that Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny had been poisoned with the nerve-paralytic agent Novichok and called on Russia to cooperate.

Specialized laboratories in Sweden and France confirmed the initial result from Germany, government spokesman Steffen Seibert said in a statement.

"We once again call on Russia to explain itself about this event. We are in close contact with our European partners about the next steps," he added.

Alexei Navalny became ill on August 20 on board the plane flying from Tomsk to Moscow. The airliner made an emergency landing in Omsk, where Navalny was hospitalized. On August 22, at the request of Navalny's relatives, he was taken to the Charite hospital in Berlin for treatment. The politician was in an induced coma for 19 days.

At the request of the hospital, experts of the special laboratory of the German armed forces conducted a toxicological analysis of samples taken from Navalny and found in them traces of the combat nerve agent from the Novichok group. The German government stressed that there is no doubt about conclusions of the Bundeswehr specialists. Moscow denies all accusations of involvement in the assassination attempt on the Russian opposition leader

  Novichok, Navalny, Russia