UK to seize Russian assets of questionable origin

UK to seize Russian assets of questionable origin
British Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson

British Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson said this in a statement.

British Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson made a statement on Monday, March 26 saying that Britain is going to take action against Russian assets of dubious origin in response to the chemical attack in Salisbury and the poisoning of the former spy Sergei Skripal. He said this during his visit to Estonia. The whole world united behind London, showing support of their stance about the poisoning of the former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter, he said.

He added that Britain is going to take action against Russian money of dubious origin in response to the chemical attack in Salisbury. Reuters quoted him as saying that the main goal is to secure the property on file. He stressed he is not yet ready to elaborate on further steps Britain would take regarding Russia. He said they were expecting instructions from Prime Minister Theresa May and that there were warrants to seize suspicious property.

He noted that London "sends an exceptionally powerful message to the Kremlin and President Putin”. According to him, European countries believe that the Russian president aims to divide Britain and its allies, but the West united “behind the British stance and that in itself is a great victory”, he concluded. Estonian Defense Minister Jüri Luik said that the Estonian government fully believes Britain's explanations regarding the chemical attack in Salisbury.

The former double spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned in Salisbury on March 4. The UK blames Russia for the poisoning. The Russian side demanded access to the investigation file, since Yulia Skripal is a Russian citizen. London refused.

There are two theories so far. According to one of them, Yulia brought the poison from Moscow. The other theory is that the poisoning could have been done through the ventilation system of Skripal’s BMW.

The poisoning incident triggered a crisis in Moscow-London relations. The UK expelled 23 Russian diplomats. Russia reacted by ousting 23 officials of the British Embassy, calling the accusations "unsubstantiated" and "provocative."

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