The UK government is planning to open a multimillion-pound facility to conduct research on chemical weapons, British Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson will announce on Thursday, citing threats from Russia and North Korea.
Scheduled to speak at an event hosted by Policy Exchange and Rolls Royce in Bristol, Williamson will say that the Ministry of Defense (MoD) is shelling out £48 million ($66 million) to build the facility at the Defense Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) in Porton Down.
The announcement comes amid heightened tensions between the UK and Russia over a recent nerve agent attack on Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter outside a shopping center in Salisbury.
Calling the attack “shocking and reckless,” Williamson will say that the new investment ensures “we maintain our cutting edge in chemical analysis and defense.”
“If we doubted the threat Russia poses to our citizens, we only have to look at…