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Germany Says Poisoning Agent Novichok Found in Aleksei Navalny's System

2020-09-02 15:27:57
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BERLIN — The Russian opposition leader Aleksei A. Navalny, currently under treatment in a German hospital, was poisoned with a deadly nerve agent from the Novichok family, the German government said on Wednesday.

Citing what it called “unequivocal evidence,” Berlin demanded an explanation from Moscow in a case that seems bound to raise tensions once more between Russia and the West.

Novichok, a Soviet-era weapon invented for military use, was used against Sergei V. Skripal, a former Soviet spy, and his daughter in a 2018 attack in Salisbury, England, that the British government attributed to Russia’s military intelligence arm, the G.R.U.

At the time of the Skripal poisoning, experts said that the stockpile of Novichok was tightly guarded, and expressed doubts that the substance would be used by anyone other than a state-sponsored agent.

Also informed of the findings were Mr. Navalny’s wife, Yulia, who flew with him to Berlin, and the doctors who are treating him at the Charité hospital, where he remains in critical but stable condition in a medically induced coma.

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