More inconsistencies in account of second UK novichok poisoning


More inconsistencies in account of second UK novichok poisoning

Thomas Scripps

11 July 2018

Yesterday evening in the UK saw the release of reports from Salisbury District Hospital that, “We have seen a small but significant improvement in the condition of Charlie Rowley. He is in a critical but stable condition, and is now conscious.”

Rowley is the second victim of a reported poisoning by a “novichok” nerve agent. His partner, Dawn Sturgess, died Sunday.

Events since the two reportedly came into contact with a nerve agent on June 29 have piled questions on top of questions.

Metropolitan police assistant commissioner Neil Basu claimed on Monday that Sturgess and Rowley received a high dose of novichok as a result of handling a container of some sort holding the nerve agent. The pair’s “reaction is so severe it resulted in Dawn’s death and Charlie being critically ill. This means they must have got a high dose.”

Rowley’s house in Amesbury, Sturgess’ Salisbury homeless hostel and the nearby Queen Elizabeth Gardens—along with several other sites—have been cordoned off and are being searched by around 100 police officers for the container, which has still not been identified in the 11 days since June 30, when they became ill and were hospitalised.

Twenty-one individuals—including police officers, hospital staff and members of the public—have been medically assessed over fears of exposure to the poison. All have been discharged.

Each development only adds to the opaque and contradictory descriptions of “novichok” first given during the Skripal affair. Dr. Mirzayanov, who claims to have worked on production of the nerve agent, states that it would have decomposed in the four months since the Salisbury events, raising doubts that it relates to…

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