Russia calls on UK to help identify poisoning suspects

By Elena Teslova

MOSCOW (AA) – Russia needs data to confirm or deny the identification of suspects in the Salisbury Novichok attack, the country’s presidential spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Friday.

"It is necessary to establish who these people are, whether there are such citizens. It's a matter of verification. We want to do this as quickly and efficiently as possible, so we again appeal to the U.K. to help identify these persons, since the information [about the suspects] has been published," Zakharova said at a news conference.

On Wednesday, British authorities named two Russian national as the suspects of Salisbury nerve-agent attack that targeted former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia Skripal earlier this year.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov are wanted for conspiracy to murder Sergei Skripal and the attempted murder of Yulia Skripal and police officer Nick Bailey.

Skripal and his daughter were admitted to a hospital after being found unconscious on March 4 in Salisbury. They were both since discharged from the Salisbury District Hospital.

Police officer Nick Bailey, who was among the first to respond to the incident, also received treatment after being poisoned.

Sergei Skripal was a granted refuge in the U.K. following a 2010 spy exchange between the U.S. and Russia. Before the exchange, he had been serving a 13-year prison term for leaking information to the British intelligence.

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