Putin says two Skripal poisoning suspects are 'civilians'

President Putin said of the suspects “They are civilians of course”

President Putin said of the suspects “They are civilians of course”

UK Prime Minister Theresa May said the two suspects were Russian military intelligence officers nearly certainly acting on orders from high up in the Russian state.

We have checked what kind of people they are.

Meanwhile, the Russian Federation 24 state television channel played what it said was a call with suspect Mr. Petrov, who said he had "so far no comment, maybe later, next week, I think". "It will be better for everyone", he said.

"There's nothing special and criminal about it, I assure you". We'll see soon. They are civilians of course.

He went on to say the civilians are not involved in the military and called on them to contact the media, so they can tell the world their own story.

Russian state TV channel Rossiya-24 said the suspect named as Alexander Petrov would maybe speak next week.

They have been identified by the United Kingdom as members of the GRU, Russia's military intelligence service.

Russian Federation has said the names of the suspects - as indicated in their passports - given to them by British prosecutors were meaningless.

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"We have repeatedly asked Russian Federation to account for what happened in Salisbury in March and they have replied with obfuscation and lies", Slack said.

Putin today addressed the suspect naming on television, again denying Russian involvement.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said the president has not communicated with the men themselves since they were accused of poisoning the Skripals. They came up with pretty much everything except a film of them planting the poison or a signed confession, but the Russians clearly have no plans to extradite them or even charge them with anything judging by how Putin is describing the situation.

British prosecutors accuse Mr. Petrov and Mr. Boshirov of conspiracy to murder Mr. Skripal, attempted murder and the use of a banned chemical weapon.

One week ago, Ed talked about the two Russian GRU agents blamed by Britain for the poisoning attack.

The Skripals' poisoning by the deadly nerve agent Novichok on March 4 triggered a tense diplomatic show down between Russia and the West. Britain and more than two dozen other countries expelled a total of 150 Russian spies working under diplomatic cover, and Russia kicked out a similar number of those countries' envoys.

They spent weeks in hospital before being discharged.

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