The woman ‘poisoned’ alongside the former Russian spy is his daughter
Counter-terror police were called in today to help investigate what substance left a Russian colonel who spied for MI6 critically ill in Salisbury on Sunday.
66-year-old Sergei Skripal— who had been granted refuge in the UK in 2010 under a “spy swap” — was found unconscious with a 33-year-old woman outside a shopping centre this weekend. It has now emerged that the woman is his daughter, Yulia Skripal.
Skripal, who had recently told police he feared for his life, is now fighting for his life along with the woman after being exposed to an ‘unknown substance’. According to media reports, Skripal had unmasked dozens of Russian agents and could have been a target of a revenge ‘hit’ by former colleagues.
Reports suggest that Vladimir Putin would not have forgiven Skripal following his treason conviction. However, Russia has said it has “no information” about what could caused the former agent to collapse. But the Kremlin was willing to co-operate in the police investigation.
Dmitry Peskov, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman, told journalists that Moscow was prepared to help with the investigation. “We see this tragic situation but we don’t have information on what could have led to this, what he was engaged in”, he added.
Last evening, police shut down a branch of the Italian restaurant chain Zizzi ‘as a precaution’ in connection with the incident, suggesting one or both of them may have dined there before.
Wiltshire Police said: ‘Public Health England are aware of this and have reiterated that, based on the evidence to date, there is no known risk to the public’s health. However, as a precaution they have advised that if you feel ill contact NHS on 111. If you feel your own or another’s health is significantly deteriorating, ring 999.’