'My strength is growing' | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, April 06, 2018 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:52 AM, April 06, 2018

'My strength is growing'

Says ex-spy's poisoned daughter as Russia demands answer

The Russian woman who was poisoned in Britain last month with her former spy father yesterday said she was recovering, in her first public statement in a case that has sparked a major diplomatic crisis between Moscow and the West.

"I woke up over a week ago now and am glad to say my strength is growing daily," Yulia Skripal was quoted as saying in comments released by the police.

The UN Security Council was due to discuss the spiralling diplomatic crisis later yesterday sparked by the poisoning of Yulia and Sergei Skripal.

Yulia Skripal said she had found the incident "disorientating", without providing any further details on the attack in her short statement.

She and her father, a former double agent, were found in a critical condition on a public bench in the English city of Salisbury on March 4.

Britain blames Russia for incident, but Moscow has furiously denied the charges.

The crisis has led to a wave of tit-for-tat expulsions of diplomats between Moscow and the West.

Russia yesterday demanded an "objective" probe into the case ahead of UN Security Council talks.

Russian state television earlier aired an unverified recording of a phone conversation between Yulia Skripal and her cousin who lives in Moscow.

In the call, a woman introducing herself as Yulia Skripal said she was expecting to be discharged from hospital soon and that her father Sergei was "fine".

Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov yesterday complained that Britain had failed to provide "coherent answers" to Moscow's questions over the nerve agent attack.

"It will not be possible to ignore the legitimate questions we are asking," he warned hours before the UN meeting.

Russia called a meeting of the global chemical watchdog on Wednesday over the Salisbury incident, but failed in its bid to join the probe by the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).

Speaking in Moscow, Lavrov called for a "substantial and responsible" probe, while alleging the Skripal case was used by Britain as "a pretext, either made up or staged, for the groundless expulsions of Russian diplomats".

President Vladimir Putin said on a visit to Ankara on Wednesday that "common sense" must prevail to avoid "this damage in international relations".

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