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Russian ambassador warns of new 'Cold War'

Europe
28.03.2018
By our dpa-correspondent and Europe Online    auf Facebook posten  Auf Twitter posten  
Sydney (dpa) - The West‘s coordinated expulsion of Russian diplomats over an alleged nerve agent attack in Britain could lead to a "Cold War situation," Russia‘s ambassador to Australia warned Wednesday.

At least two dozen countries and NATO have expelled more than 140 Russian diplomats in response to the poisoning of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the city of Salisbury earlier this month.

Britain alleges that the attack was ordered by Moscow and that a Russian-developed nerve toxin identified as Novichok was used.

Grigory Logvinov, the Russian ambassador to Canberra, told reporters there was a conspiracy between Western nations to discredit Russia, which started when the country became more independent after the 1990s.

"If the West would follow this line, I‘m afraid we will be deeply in a Cold War situation," Logvinov said.

The two intelligence officers Australia said it would expel on Tuesday were "absolutely legal, career diplomats," he added.

He also questioned what had happened to the Skripals, who remain in a critical condition in hospital.

"My gosh, who has seen the Skripals after their alleged poisoning?" he said. "Who has seen any real medical report beside the political statements that they were poisoned with some alleged nerve agent?"

Logvinov said there was no reason for Russia to be interested in the double agent.

"[Skripal] was sentenced, he served his sentence, he was free. He‘s of no interest to Russia any more," he said.

Logvinov also said Russian President Vladimir Putin was waiting for recommendations on how to respond to the mass expulsion of diplomats.

 

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