Boris Johnson has called for allies to support its stand against Russia
A day after Prime Minister Theresa May said that 23 Russian diplomats would be expelled after Moscow refused to explain how a Russian-made nerve agent was used on a former spy in the UK, Russian state news agency RIA has now reported that the country will expel British diplomats in retaliation.
Former Russian spy Sergei Skripal had been granted refuge in the UK in 2010 under a “spy swap” but was found unconscious with his 33-year daughter outside a shopping centre in Salisbury. The Skripals remain in hospital in critical condition.
Showing a solidarity with UK, White House has stated that it “stands in solidarity” with “its closest ally” and supports its decision to expel the diplomats.
Meanwhile, foreign secretary Boris Johnson has also called for its allies to support its stand against Russia over the Salisbury spy poisoning.
He wrote in the Washington Post today that “all responsible nations” shared an obligation to take on Russian aggression that “threatens the very architecture of global security”.
He said: “Britain is striving to uphold the rules on which the safety of every country depends. I hope and believe that our friends will stand alongside us…In its blatant Russian-ness, the nerve agent sends a signal to all who may be thinking of dissent in the intensifying repression of Putin’s Russia.
“The message is clear: We will find you, we will catch you, we will kill you – and though we will deny it with lip-curling scorn, the world will know beyond doubt that Russia did it.”
So far, Moscow has denied responsibility of the attack. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova had said that Russia has not received any samples related to the Salisbury nerve agent attack and all allegations of Russia’s involvement are “insane”.