Moscow confronts London with 14 questions on ‘fabricated’ Skripal case – By RT

Moscow confronts London with 14 questions on ‘fabricated’ Skripal case
Russia’s Embassy in London has sent a list of 14 questions to the UK Foreign Ministry, demanding that it reveals details of the investigation into the nerve-agent poisoning of former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter.

The questions, provided in full below, include a demand to clarify whether samples of the nerve agent “Novichok” have ever been developed in the UK. The embassy’s statement calls the incident that started the recent diplomatic row a “fabricated case against Russia.”

READ MORE: ‘US expelling America’s friends’: Russian Ambassador decries Trump’s move as diplomats leave DC

1. Why has Russia been denied the right of consular access to the two Russian citizens, who came to harm on British territory?

2. What specific antidotes and in what form were the victims injected with? How did such antidotes come into the possession of British doctors at the scene of the incident?

3. On what grounds was France involved in technical cooperation in the investigation of the incident, in which Russian citizens were injured?

4. Did the UK notify the OPCW (Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons) of France’s involvement in the investigation of the Salisbury incident?

5. What does France have to do with the incident, involving two Russian citizens in the UK?

6. What rules of UK procedural legislation allow for the involvement of a foreign state in an internal investigation?

7. What evidence was handed over to France to be studied and for the investigation to be conducted?

8. Were the French experts present during the sampling of biomaterial from Sergei and Yulia Skripal?

9. Was the study of biomaterials from Sergei and Yulia Skripal conducted by the French experts and, if so, in which specific laboratories?

10. Does the UK have the materials involved in the investigation carried out by France?  

11. Have the results of the French investigation been presented to the OPCW Technical Secretariat?

12. Based on what attributes was the alleged “Russian origin” of the substance used in Salisbury established?

13. Does the UK have control samples of the chemical warfare agent, which British representatives refer to as “Novichok”?

14. Have the samples of a chemical warfare agent of the same type as “Novichok” (in accordance to British terminology) or its analogues been developed in the UK?

READ MORE: Moscow expels diplomats of countries that kicked out Russians over Skripal case

Britain’s Last Hurrah to Vandalize EU-Russia Relations – By Finian Cunningham (Sputnik)

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Global insanity has taken over international relations. The British government is leading dozens of nations down a precarious path of Monty Python burlesque politics towards Russia.

It’s far from funny. This is how world wars are incited.

Over 100 Russian diplomats are being expelled by the United States, Canada, Australia, and European countries — largely at the behest of official British claims that Russia was responsible for an alleged poison attack in England earlier this month.

Moscow, as well as many other independent observers, have pointed out that not one scrap of evidence has been presented to date by the British government to support its claim that Russian state agents carried out an assassination attempt on a former MI6 double agent and his daughter in Salisbury on March 4.

READ MORE: How PM May Diverts Public Attention Away From Child Sex Abuse

Sergei (66) and 33-year-old Yulia Skripal reportedly remain in hospital after apparently being injured from exposure to a nerve-agent substance while they were in a public space. But the exact circumstances of how they fell ill is not known. British claims of Russian state culpability are simply that: unverified claims.

The link to alleged Russian state involvement is tenuous at best, relying on undisclosed claims made by the British concerning the hypothetical poisonous substance which the Skripals supposedly encountered.

Yet on the basis of no evidence and heaps of sensational British speculation now more than 25 nations have exacted retribution on Russia, expelling up to 130 diplomats this week. The campaign to penalize Russia looks set to escalate even further. British Prime Minister Theresa May says that more punitive measures are being considered. The US and EU have also warned of further sanctions.London is gloating at its capacity to galvanize other nations into action against Russia. And so it might. For it is something of an achievement — albeit dubious — that the British have managed to whip up one of the worst diplomatic crisis since the Second World War, based solely on lurid anti-Russian innuendo.

It is all the more something to marvel at given that Britain is in the throes of an acrimonious row with the European Union over its decision to quit the bloc.

The Brexit referendum held in 2016 ends British membership of the European community after more than 40 years from its joining in 1973. The departure has caused an existential rupture in the EU, unleashing tensions among separatist political forces in other member states. Not so long ago, senior EU figures were fretting that the entire bloc might even collapse altogether after the British blow to leave.

READ MORE: Moscow Lambasts ‘Lying US Accusations’ Over Skripal Case

So, given the damage that British national politics have inflicted on the European Union it is rather astounding that now the bloc is rallying at the behest of Britain to further undermine relations with Russia.

It is unbelievable that supposedly advanced democracies in Europe are indulging Britain’s trashing of legal standards to make wild claims against Russia.

However, on one hand we should not be surprised. Britain’s historic role with regard to Europe since the Second World War has been to act as a spoiler to ensure that European states did not embrace socialist politics or develop friendly relations with Russia.

After World War II, there was a strong movement across Europe to adopt socialism. That was anathema to the Americans and their always-close British ally as the custodians of international capitalism. This was one reason why the US-led military alliance, the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, was set up in 1949 as a bulwark to keep Europe under Anglo-American control.NATO’s first secretary-general, Britain’s Lord Ismay, quipped that the function of the alliance was “to keep the Americans in, the Germans down and the Russians out”.

The European Union and its precursor European Economic Community was another such vehicle for American and British control over the continent to make sure it didn’t establish independent, friendly relations with the Soviet Union.

One of the European architects, French President Charles De Gaulle, did not want to admit Britain to the early community because he rightly envisaged the British acting as a spanner in the works. How right De Gaulle was.

READ MORE: Macron Accused of ‘Servility’ for Rejecting to Visit Russian Book Stand in Paris

For most of its four-decade membership of the European bloc, Britain has been a troublesome party. It has always seemed to be out of step with the rest of Europe, using the benefits of trade, while at the same time stirring up political problems over Britain’s “special status”.

The Brexit debacle is the outcome of decades of incorrigible British carping and spoiling with the rest of Europe.

The irony is that just as this churlish European member is packing its bags to leave the bloc, Britain bequeaths a final act of vandalism on EU-Russian relations with its outlandish tale of an assassination attempt.

It is particularly risible that Britain’s Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has played such a prominent role in the latest saga, agitating “solidarity” among EU members against Russia. This is the same Johnson who arrogantly wants to dump Europe to pursue British fantasies of renewed “greatness”. Recall his bumptious response to EU claims for financial compensation over the Brexit divorce: he advised the Europeans “to go whistle” — meaning, no reparation.British leaders must be smugly laughing up their sleeves over the collective insanity they have induced across Europe in particular.

We can expect nothing better from Washington. It is only too willing to exploit an opportunity to demonize and debilitate Russia especially given its strategic goal of displacing Russian gas from European markets with its own fuel exports.

What is perplexing is just how gullible European states are to adopt a British wild-goose-chase story based on no evidence, which is storing up longterm strategic problems with Russia and the continent of Europe. Have the Europeans learnt nothing from their history of wars and destruction, and manipulation by perfidious Britain?

Amazing too is the timing of horrendous anniversaries. This month, it is 15 years since the Americans and British waged an illegal war on Iraq based on lies, inflicting over one million deaths and setting the entire Middle East on fire; this month, it is also seven years since the American and British principally launched the covert wars for regime change in Syria and Libya which have flooded Europe with a refugee crisis; it is three years this month since the Americans and British began supporting the Saudi war on Yemen which is described by the UN as the worst man-made humanitarian crisis in decades.All the evidence for these American-British horrors are as plain as the nose on your face. And yet the pious European states have not issued sanctions for those crimes. No. They are instead prepared to cut the nose off their face to spite their own relations with Russia — all on the say-so of the self-serving British.

European political leaders may not have common morality or intelligence to see the travesty. But ordinary European citizens do. That is why the venal EU bureaucracy is in deep trouble. Its feckless leaders are betraying the real needs of the people, to pursue geopolitical charades. The people will not forgive such odious decadence.

The views and opinions expressed by Finian Cunningham are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

Skripal case: EU Council ditches Theresa May’s ultimatum to Russia – By Alexander Mercouris (THE DURAN)

EU Council statement retreats from “culpable” to “highly likely”, and refers to “ongoing investigation” of Skripal case

 

In my previous article about the failure of Britain’s allies to give Britain the strong support it expected in the Skripal case I predicted that the EU Council meeting on 22nd March 2018 would publish a statement which appeared to be strongly supportive of Britain but which on careful examination would turn out to be less than it seemed.

So it has been proved, as shown by the statement the EU Council did put out, which has now published on the Europa website

  1. The European Council condemns in the strongest possible terms the recent attack in Salisbury, expresses its deepest sympathies to all whose lives have been threatened and lends its support to the ongoing investigation. It agrees with the United Kingdom government’s assessment that it is highly likely that the Russian Federation is responsible and that there is no plausible alternative explanation. We stand in unqualified solidarity with the United Kingdom in the face of this grave challenge to our shared security.

  2. The use of chemical weapons, including the use of any toxic chemicals as weapons under any circumstances, is completely unacceptable, must be systematically and rigorously condemned and constitutes a security threat to us all. Member States will coordinate on the consequences to be drawn in the light of the answers provided by the Russian authorities. The European Union will remain closely focused on this issue and its implications.

  3. Against this background, the European Union must strengthen its resilience to Chemical, Biological, Radiological and Nuclear-related risks, including through closer cooperation between the European Union and its Member States as well as NATO. The European Union and its Member States should also continue to bolster their capabilities to address hybrid threats, including in the areas of cyber, strategic communication and counter-intelligence. The European Council invites the European Commission and the High Representative to take this work forward and report on progress by the June European Council.

(bold italics added)

One of the great problems any person trying to make sense of the current state of international relations immediately encounters is that any news concerning Russia is immediately subjected to a vast volume of negative noise.

This is the case with this EU Council statement, which the British media – predictably enough – is presenting as a “victory” for Theresa May.

This article in The Times of London serves as a good example.

Note for example how this article misrepresents a telephone conversation on 22nd March 2018 between Russian President Vladimir Putin and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras as a Russian “diplomatic rearguard action to avoid further punitive measures”.

In fact, as the Kremlin’s summary of the conversation shows, it was Tsipras who called Putin, doing so – as Trump and Macron have previously done, and as the Finnish and Croatian Presidents also did on the same day – in order to congratulate Putin on his re-election.

In reality what the EU Council statement does is take the position back to what it was in Theresa May’s statement to the British House of Commons on 12th March 2018 ie. before the British ultimatum, which has been effectively annulled.

In her statement of 12th March 2018 Theresa May used the following words

Based on the positive identification of this chemical agent by world-leading experts at the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory at Porton Down; our knowledge that Russia has previously produced this agent and would still be capable of doing so; Russia’s record of conducting state-sponsored assassinations; and our assessment that Russia views some defectors as legitimate targets for assassinations; the Government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible for the act against Sergei and Yulia Skripal.

 
 

Mr. Speaker, there are therefore only two plausible explanations for what happened in Salisbury on the 4th of March.

Either this was a direct act by the Russian state against our country.

Or the Russian government lost control of this potentially catastrophically damaging nerve agent and allowed it to get into the hands of others.

The words “highly likely” and “plausible explanation” in the EU Council statement are obviously taken from Theresa May’s 12th March 2018 statement.

However on 14th March 2018 – following expiry of her ultimatum – Theresa May in a second statement to the British House of Commons said the following

Mr Speaker, there is no alternative conclusion other than that the Russian State was culpable for the attempted murder of Mr Skripal and his daughter – and for threatening the lives of other British citizens in Salisbury, including Detective Sergeant Nick Bailey.

This represents an unlawful use of force by the Russian State against the United Kingdom.

What was only “highly likely” on 12th March 2018 had on 14th March 2018 become fact, so that based on Russia’s supposed failure to answer Britain’s questions by the deadline Theresa May set in her ultimatum of 12th March 2018 there was “no alternative conclusion” than that Russia “was culpable for the attempted murder of Mr. Skripal and his daughter” and had committed “an unlawful use of force….against the United Kingdom”.

This definite conclusion of Russian culpability in Theresa May’s 14th March 2018 statement has now been set aside.

We are now once again back in the EU Council statement – which note Theresa May has signed – to the position of Russian responsibility being no more than “highly likely” as it was in Theresa May’s statement of 12th March 2018.

Needless to say the words “highly likely” leave open the possibility that the murder attempt on Skripal was the work of someone else other than Russia.  Theresa May after all admitted as much in her statement of 12th March 2018 when she said she would only conclude the Russians were guilty if they failed within the deadline set by her ultimatum to answer her questions.

Even the words “no plausible alternative explanation” – also clearly borrowed from Theresa May’s 12th March 2018 – are qualified words.  They leave open the possibility of other “alternative explanations” which may for the moment appear “implausible” but which could turn out to be true.

Needless to say the words “highly likely” – which imply no more than suspicion – come nowhere close to meeting the test applied by British courts to determine guilt or innocence in criminal cases, which is “beyond reasonable doubt”.

As a matter of fact the EU Council statement pointedly refers to an “ongoing investigation” – something which implicitly admits that questions of guilt or innocence in the case have still not been decided – and over the course of which the Russians are expected to answer questions (“the answers provided by the Russian authorities”).

Of course the fact that the Russian authorities are once again being asked to provide answers to questions – without moreover any deadline being set for their answers – further confirms that Theresa May’s ultimatum of 12th March 2018 – which demanded Russia’s answers by midnight on 13th March 2018 – has been set aside.

Unsurprisingly, since the question of Russian involvement in the Skripal attack has now once again been downgraded from certainty to mere suspicion, the “unlawful use of force” in Theresa May’s statement of 14th March 2018 has also been downgraded to a “grave challenge”.

Needless to say, the EU Council statement also says that the EU gives Britain its “unqualified solidarity”, and in a joint press conference Merkel and Macron have said that they treat the British claim that the nerve agent which was used to poison Sergey and Yulia Skripal is a Novichok to be as “well founded”.

 

However Merkel and Macron also spoke of the investigation being still ongoing, whilst the “unqualified solidarity” the EU is giving is with Theresa May’s position of 12th March 2018, not with her position of 14th March 2018.

The EU Council statement is in fact a typical product of a compromise.

Media reports suggest that the original draft was – no doubt intentionally – much weaker.

That allowed scope for negotiations with the British over the wording of the draft in which the British were forced to respond to the objections of counties like Austria, Hungary, Bulgaria, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, Cyprus and Greece, which have all made their doubts about the British rush to judgement perfectly clear.

That set the scene for Merkel to do what she always does in these situations, which is broker an apparent compromise, which is in reality to the position she has had all along.

In this case that is to put the position back to where it was in Theresa May’s statement of 12th March 2018, minus Theresa May’s ultimatum of that date, which has now been cancelled.

Meanwhile the prospect of further significant EU action against Russia has been kicked into the long grass, with any further action being apparently postponed until the conclusion of the investigation, which the British police are saying may be months away.

By that time of course Brexit will be even closer, and Britain’s diplomatic traction within the EU will be even weaker than it is now.

Of course if the investigation has not been concluded before Brexit takes place – which as of the time of writing is starting to look increasingly likely – then British diplomatic traction within the EU by the time the investigation is finally concluded will be weaker still.

In the meantime the only thing the EU for the moment is collectively prepared to do is make the token gesture of withdrawing the EU’s ambassador from Moscow for four days for consultations.

Some EU member states are supposedly considering expelling Russian diplomats.  Should that happen then the Russians will of course respond in kind.

However significant further sanctions against Russia are according to one of the EU’s Commissioners apparently being ruled out.

As the US recently concluded, further sanctions against Russia would be ineffective and counter-productive anyway.

Whilst the Skripal affair is not over, I suspect that the peak of the international aspect of this “crisis” is now passing.

If one compares what the British appeared to be threatening at the start of the crisis two weeks ago with what has actually happened, it is questionable whether there has even been a “crisis” at all.

No major Western state apart from Britain has cut off high level contacts with Russia.  No sanctions of any sort have been imposed.

Proposals to break off diplomatic relations with Russia, cut Russian banks off from SWIFT, launch cyber attacks against Russia, declare Russia a terrorist state, ban Russians from buying property in London, and for a boycott the 2018 World Cup, appear to have been abandoned

If the British plan was to get NATO support by invoking Article 5 – as I strongly suspect – then that plan has failed.

Even talk of cancelling RT’s broadcasting licence in Britain seems to be abating.

There have been reciprocal expulsions of diplomats from London and Moscow.  As I have said previously that will hurt the British more than it will hurt the Russians.  If more tit-for-tat expulsions of Russian diplomats involving other European countries happen, that will hurt the Russians more.  However it will hardly help those countries either.

In fact the only significant step any party has so far taken during this “crisis” which will cause any other party actual injury is the Russian decision to close down the British Council in Russia.

Whilst that is hardly a major blow, for a country like Britain which relies so heavily on soft power it is a blow nonetheless.

The crisis may have damaged further Russia’s already terrible image in Britain and – though I suspect to a much lesser degree – in northern Europe (in the US this crisis appears to have barely registered, whilst perception of Russia – and of the Skripal crisis – is completely different in southern Europe).

However my impression is that the British reaction to the attack on Sergey and Yulia Skripal was so over the top, and so obviously violated due process, that in the long run it will be Britain whose image will have been damaged across Europe more than Russia’s.  Sigmar Gabriel, Germany’s recently retired former Foreign Minister, has recently described the Skripal affair as a “bad James Bond film” and that I suspect is what many Europeans – including many European governments – privately think.

Even in Britain I am starting to sense that a reaction is starting to set in, with even some of Theresa May’s new found fans noticing that the hysteria over the Skripal case has coincided with a further cave-in by Theresa May in the Brexit talks, and some of her fans perhaps even noticing that the actual position of Britain’s Western allies in the Skripal case is essentially the same as the much despised position taken by Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, whom some sections of the British media have come close to branding a traitor.

As for the Skripal case itself, the prospect of an impartial inquiry has been almost certainly fatally compromised by Theresa May’s disastrous decision to pre-empt the investigation’s findings by making a declaration of Russia’s guilt just days after the investigation had begun and whilst it was still underway.

Inevitably that is going to put enormous pressure on the investigators to support her conclusions, making it less likely that important clues will be followed up.

I no longer expect ever to learn the truth about this affair

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Author Says White Helmets, Avaaz Sing From Same Song Sheet, Reveals Orchestrator – By SPUTNIK

An activist with a face painted with the British Union Flag (L) and the US flag (R) poses in front of a Stop Trump battle bus in London on September 21, 2016 in a campaign run by campaign group Avaaz to mobilise US expatriots in the UK to register to vote in the US presidential election. Voters are set to go to the polls to elect the 45th president of the US on November 8, 2016.

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Avaaz, a US-based cyber activist organization has been calling for the boycott of the soon-to-be 2018 FIFA World Cup in Russia, unless Russia stops its anti-terrorist operations in Syria. David Icke, writer and public speaker, has given his take on this and much more in an interview to with Sputnik.

David Icke: There are two things that go on in terms of a war – you have a physical war, but then you have to justify the physical war, and that’s by the war on perception. Organizations like Avaaz and of course the White Helmets actually sing from the same song sheet, are pushing out the propaganda particularly to the young in Avaaz’s case to tens of millions of members now to sow regime change after regime change.

Remember, it was Avaaz that was pushing for no-fly zone in Libya, which has turned Libya, ultimately, into a catastrophe. Then it was pushing for the no-fly zone in Syria – we see the same. So, this list of regime changes has been very clearly sorted at every step by this organization. And we should therefore have massive questions about it.

If you look at the guy who runs it, Ricken Patel, he’s been an adviser to the UN, to the Rockefeller Foundation, to the Gates Foundation and to the International Crisis Group which has Soros and other globalists as trustees.And of course, Avaaz was created by moveon.org and organization called Res Publica, both of which are George Soros-funded and Soros is now infamous for using his Open Society Foundation work to trigger “revolutions” to remove the very people and regimes that were on their list in September 2000.

If you want a conflict with Russia, which has been a plan all along, then of course, if that’s the outcome, you have to demonize Russia to prepare the global public to accept your outcome. This is why NATO forces are constantly building up on Russia’s borders. Vladimir Putin must be an absolute genius, because his power was responsible for everything.

Look at the claims that Russia actually manipulated and caused Trump actually to win at the American election, you look at what’s happened in Salisbury with the nerve agent attack, you look at what’s happening in Syria – these are just excuses after excuses. I mean Russia apparently manipulated the Brexit vote – I mean what else?

“I’ve burnt the toast – it’s the Russians!”, “I’ve burnt the flat – it’s the Russians!” It’s become that ludicrous because what we are looking at is a global propaganda campaign to demonize Russia to prepare the global public to accept the outcome they are going towards and wish to happen. 

Sputnik: If this information continues to spread as fake news – you’ve stated that fake news reaches users faster than real news – is more likely to be shared. If that is the case, we are in for a very, very tough time, aren’t we David?David Icke: Of course fake news has many, many faces. One face is mainstream media which has been absolutely founded, and even more so than ever before now, on faking information and misleading the public as to what is happening and particularly the context of what is happening. And then you have the alleged fake news which is what Facebook, and Google and all are using as an excuse to sensor alternative narratives, and that is invariably not fake news but simply looking at a situation from an angle that the global establishment doesn’t want people to see the world in that fashion.

They only want to see them, to see the way that they wish them to view the world. If you are after controlling perception, which is what this is all about, then where do people get perceptions from? From information received. It could be a personal experience; it could be the 10 o’clock news. For most people, that information comes from the equivalent of the 10 o’clock news – from mainstream media.

READ MORE: Labour Leader Under Fire From Party MPs for Stance on Skripal Poisoning

Now, if you are going to control perception, you have to control the information received, that’s going to lead to that perception. The last thing you want is people coming from another angle and saying “Hold on, this is why we are having attacks on Russia today, in Britain and cause them to be banned and deleted.”

That’s why you’ve had that demonization of Jeremy Corbyn in Britain, the opposition Labour party leader – for having the absolute audacity to ask for evidence to support the claim that Russia, the Russian government was involved in that attack. We are now living in a post-fact, post-evidence society, and that is because you control the information people receive, you invariably control the perceptions they come to. 

Sputnik: What’s your take on the FIFA World Cup that’s scheduled to take place in Russia? Some say the measure in terms of cancelling the World Cup will damage world’s sport forever. What do you think?

David Icke: I think, calls to stop the World Cup are an absolute joke, but you see, it’s part of this demonization. Who else is calling for the World Cup to be banned in Russia? Avaaz!

These are different strands in the same web that want to give the impression that they are operating in isolation. They are not. They are pushing an agenda which is coordinated.You know, what’s very encouraging in Britain, particularly from my experience is that those that dominate the microphones with their hysteria and their nonsense and their lack of evidence, and their lack of sanity – they are speaking one language, but large numbers of the British people are speaking another language. If you are so desperate to demonize Russia for instance, you can overcook the pot. And if you overcook the pot – and people are increasingly not buying it – the more their hysteria is becoming counterproductive.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are solely those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

Skripals poisoning is terrorist attack on Russian citizens – Moscow – By RT

Skripals poisoning is terrorist attack on Russian citizens – Moscow
The attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter is an act of terrorism against Russian citizens, the Russian Foreign Ministry says, noting that the UK does not share any evidence with Moscow while demanding explanations.

“The British authorities don’t share any data they received following the probe [on the Skripal case] and don’t answer any questions concerning Yulia Skripal,” Director of Department for Nonproliferation & Arms Control Vladimir Ermakov said at a meeting with representatives from foreign embassies in Russia. He said that Russia insists on being given “all evidence regarding a terrorist attack against Russian citizens at the territory of Great Britain.” Yulia Skripal, 33, who was poisoned along with her father Sergei Skripal in Salisbury earlier in March, is a Russian citizen.

According to an official from the British Embassy who was present at the briefing, London offered “a chance for a bilateral discussion” to Moscow since the start.
London sees the poisoning of Skripal and his daughter as “an attempted assassination attempt,” she said, adding that “the UK concluded that it was highly likely that Russia was responsible for the attempted murder of these two people.”
“Then why don’t we carry out a joint investigation, ensuring the transparence of all the data, rather than talk about some sort of Novichok toxic agent,” Ermakov noted, responding to the British official.
Moscow is ready for a joint investigation on the case with London and with the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), according to the diplomat.
Moscow has repeatedly stated that it is ready to cooperate with the UK to investigate the incident which left the former Russian double agent and his daughter in critical condition. However, London seemed to ignore the calls.
The ministry’s top official called all accusations towards Russia “groundless” and “hysterical.” Ermakov said Russia has nothing to do with the poisoning of 66-year-old Skripal, noting that such a “gamble” is not in Moscow’s interests.
They emphasized that certain chemical substances which they call ‘Novichok’ were used in the poisoning [of the former Russian double agent]. I can say that none of these versions which we’ve heard stands up to any criticism,” he added.
The case has seen many “inconsistencies,” and the British side seems to be “confusing evidence,” according to Ermakov.

“Logic suggests that there are only two possible things. Either the British authorities are not able to provide protection from such a, let’s say, terrorist attack on their soil, or they – whether directly or indirectly, I am not accusing anyone – have orchestrated an attack on a Russian citizen,” he added.
He said that the UK has not provided any evidence that the substance which was used to poison Skripal and his daughter was produced in Russia.
Russia does not accuse anyone of anything when it comes to the Skripal case, Ermakov said at the briefing.
“We are closely following the developments of the Skripal case… I am sure that the authors and the participants of this provocation will soon be punished… I would like to stress that Russia does not accuse anyone of anything.”
Representatives of Paris and Washington said in their statements that they stand by the UK’s version of events in Skripal case. Ermakov called on them to wait for the results of the investigation, noting that “France has no data of its own.”
The former Russian intelligence officer was a part of a “spy swap” between the US and Russia back in 2010. He had worked as a double agent for the UK intelligence agency MI6 and was jailed in Russia in 2006 for spying for Britain. Russia released four spies in exchange for 10 Russian agents back in 2010.

 
 

Commentaries in Guardian and Financial Times say that Russia can be declared guilty without being given chance to defend itself – By Alexander Mercouris (THE DURAN)

Now British media admits it in Skripal case: due process ‘does not apply’ to Russia

It is becoming increasingly difficult for the British authorities and for the British media to deny that ‘due process‘ – ie. the well-established system of rules for conducting fair and impartial trials and investigations in order to determine questions of guilt or innocence – are not being followed by the British authorities in the Skripal case.

Here are some of the violations of due process the British authorities which in my opinion the British authorities are committing:

(1) The British government is interfering in the conduct of a criminal investigation, with Prime Minister Theresa May and especially Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson pointing fingers at who they say is the guilty party (Russia) whilst the criminal investigation is still underway;

(2) The British government has said that unless Russia proves itself innocent within a specific time the British government will conclude that it is guilty.  As I have explained previously this reverses the burden of proof: in a criminal case it is the prosecution which is supposed to prove the defendant’s guilt, not the defendant who must prove his innocence;

(3) The British government refuses to share with Russia – the party it says is guilty – the ‘evidence’ upon which it says it has concluded that Russia is guilty, the evidence in this case being a sample of the chemical with which it says Sergey and Yulia Skripal was poisoned.  This violates the fundamental principle that the defendant must be provided with all the evidence against him so that he can properly prepare his defence;

(4) The British government is not following the procedure set out in Article IX (2) of the Chemical Weapons Convention to which both Britain and Russia are parties.  This reads as follows

States Parties should, whenever possible, first make every effort to clarify and resolve, through exchange of information and consultations among themselves, any matter which may cause doubt about compliance with this Convention, or which gives rise to concerns about a related matter which may be considered ambiguous. A State Party which receives a request from another State Party for clarification of any matter which the requesting State Party believes causes such a doubt or concern shall provide the requesting State Party as soon as possible, but in any case not later than ten days after the request, with information sufficient to answer the doubt or concern raised along with an explanation of how the information provided resolves the matter.

This says clearly that in a case like the Skripal case the British authorities should have sent a request for information to the Russian authorities, who would then have had up to ten days in which to respond.

Instead the British demanded a Russian reply within 36 hours, and said they would assume Russian guilt unless one was provided which they were satisfied with.

There has been an attempt to argue that the British disregard of the procedure set out in Article IX (2) does not breach the Chemical Weapons Convention, and I will set it out the British position as it appears in an article in The Conversation

The process set out in Article IX(2) cannot be the exclusive remedy in all cases where doubts arise surrounding compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention. For example, it would be absurd to suggest that a state which has suffered an armed attack involving chemical weapons may not defend itself against that attack, but instead must issue a request for information to the attacking state and then patiently await its response within ten days.

In fact, on a closer reading, it’s clear that the obligation set out in Article IX(2) is not of an absolute character. It requires state parties to “make every effort” to clarify and resolve doubts. This duty is framed in the language of “should”, rather than “shall”, and is engaged only “whenever possible”. The terms of the clause therefore enable a state to adopt alternative measures should the circumstances so warrant.

After the Salisbury incident, one of the UK’s responses was to call a meeting of the UN Security Council. While Russia vehemently opposed this move as being contrary to the Chemical Weapons Convention, none of the other members of the Security Council, all of which are also signatories of that treaty, shared this view.

It is also important to be clear about the scope of Article IX(2). The provision deals with the clarification of doubts surrounding compliance with the Chemical Weapons Convention. However, the British government had already concluded that it was highly likely that Russia was responsible for the incident. Based on the identification of the nerve agent involved, named as Novichok, the fact that Russia has produced the agent in the past and in the light of Russia’s past conduct and current intent, it was not unreasonable for the UK government to come to this conclusion, in line with the standards of proof applicable in international law in similar circumstances.

I find this wholly unconvincing and I am sure the vast majority of international lawyers would do so also.

What this argument essentially says is that the British are entitled to disregard the procedure set out in Article IX (2) because they had already concluded in advance of their enquiry to the Russians on the basis of evidence which they are not prepared to share with the Russians that Russia is ‘highly likely’ to have been guilty of carrying out the attack on Skripal.

That effectively admits that the ‘request for information’ – ie. Theresa May’s ultimatum to Russia – was not made in good faith and it was not really a genuine ‘request for information’ at all, but was rather a rhetorical device intended to make it easier for the British government to say without providing further proof that Russia is guilty.

Far from providing a justification for ignoring the procedure set out in Article IX (2), this looks to me more like an admission that the British have not been acting in good faith, which of course is not merely a violation of the Chemical Weapons Convention but of due process.

(5) The British authorities are denying the Russians consular access to Yulia Skripal, though she is a Russian citizen who the British authorities say was subjected to a criminal assault on their territory.

This is a potentially serious matter since by preventing consular access to Yulia Skripal the British authorities are not only violating the interstate consular arrangements which exist between Britain and Russia, but they are preventing the Russian authorities from learning more about the condition of one of their citizens who has been hospitalised following a violent criminal assault, and are preventing the Russian authorities from carrying out their own investigation into the assault on one of their citizens which the British authorities say has taken place.

I would add that this obstruction of Russian consular access to Yulia Skripal has gone almost entirely unreported in the British and Western media.

Needless to say, if the situation were reversed and it was the Russian authorities who were denying the British consular access to a British citizen who had been hospitalised following a criminal assault in Russia, I have no doubt that the British and Western media would be far less reticent about it.

In truth the violations of due process are so egregious that sections of the British media have been in effect forced to admit that they are happening, and are now trying to justify them.

Here for example is what Jonathan Freedland in the Guardian has said

On the face of it, Jeremy Corbyn’s position, as set out in the Guardian yesterday, seems eminently reasonable. Anxious to learn the lessons of the Iraq catastrophe of 2003, he suggested we exercise patience: let’s wait and see where the investigation leads, let’s not “rush way ahead of the evidence”. After all, said his spokesman, the intelligence agencies had been wrong before……

But those pleas to delay judgment point to a wider error: a misreading of the nature of the contemporary Russian state…..

The error here is to assume that Moscow’s attitude to evidence and due process is the same as that of nations still governed by the rule of law. But in Putin’s Russia, lying has long been a routine and integral part of statecraft. No matter how copious the evidence, Putin will think nothing of denying it….

What meaning does “due process” have when dealing with such a regime? Moscow would not cooperate in good faith with an investigation by the international chemical weapons watchdog, offering up evidence that might be incriminating. They would see such an inquiry instead as a useful delaying tactic, one that would allow them to issue yet more denials, wild counter-accusations (“Salisbury was an MI5 plot to distract from Brexit”) and obfuscation – disseminated either through their RT propaganda TV station or by their army of bots and online enablers. That way they could generate yet more of the fog of doubt and confusion that they believe undermines the west’s confidence and strengthens them. This is the Putin modus operandi: spread doubt until the public grows exhausted and concludes that the truth is unknowable.

(bold italics added)

More pithily an editorial the Financial Times says the same thing

President Vladimir Putin’s government uses a well-worn playbook after it commits an international outrage. The first Russian response is denial mixed with the propagation of a variety of implausible alternative explanations….

The Kremlin then tries to blunt the response by wrapping its accusers up in procedure. The game is to confuse the narrative, delay the international response — and demonstrate to the Russian people and the wider world that the Kremlin can act with impunity.

(bold italics added)

The first thing to say about these articles is that they are an admission that in the Skripal case due process – ie. proper procedure in a case like this – is not being followed.

The second thing to say is that they show a startling failure to understand the purpose of due process.

Due process in a criminal investigation is not a favour to the defendant.  It is the way to arrive at the truth.

That is why in England in criminal appeals judges say that convictions in cases where due process has not been followed are ‘unsafe’.  What they mean is that because due process was not followed the court cannot be sure that the case which has been made against the defendant has been made out.

It follows that defendant’s alleged lack of good faith (the reason Jonathan Freedland and the Financial Times are giving for disapplying due process in cases involving Russia) is not a reason for disapplying due process since using due process.

It is in fact ridiculous to say – as Jonathan Freedland and the Financial Times are in effect saying – that due process should be disapplied because they believe the defendant in this case – ie. Russia –  is lying and is never going to admit its guilt.

Defendants often lie when cases are brought against them.  If they did not there would be no reason to have trials.  Defendants very often go on denying their guilt even when courts have convicted them after trials.  That is not a reason for not having trials.

Stripped of their bogus arguments, what Jonathan Freedland and the Guardian are saying is that when Russia is accused of something it has no right to defend itself.

That is an astonishing and deeply troubling thing to say.

It also looks to me rather like an admission that in the Skripal case the British authorities do not have the evidence to prove that their accusation against Russia is true.

That does not surprise me because the British authorities have apparently been unable to provide even their closest allies with evidence which proves that their accusation against Russia is true.

Here is what Der Spiegel says the British have told the Germans about the evidence – or lack of evidence – they have in the case

The key to the Skripal case is to be found in the toxin that was used. When the British briefed their German colleagues this week, they didn’t go into great detail, according to sources in German security circles. Intelligence services suspect that could be because the British no longer completely trust the Americans and are particularly wary of Donald Trump.

The British didn’t even tell their German counterparts which variation of the nerve agent they believe was used. Western intelligence experts suspect that it was Novichok of the A-232 variety, which is fluid enough to be used as a spray.

The vocabulary used by the UK and its allies indicates that British intelligence officials are highly confident in their assessment. Yet although it is clear which substance was used and that it very likely came from Russian stockpiles, there is no definitive proof that the Russian state was behind the attack, according to a senior German official on Thursday evening. The official has read through all of the documents that have thus far been presented. He said that intelligence officials are viewing the evidence laid out in those documents — several tightly printed pages — as a “compelling chain of clues.”

(bold italics added)

In other words the British case against Russia in the Skripal case is no more than surmise (a “compelling chain of clues”).

It is not based on evidence because as of Thursday 15th March 2018 (when the Germans were given the facts) there was none.

What of the argument Jonathan Freedland and the Financial Times both make – echoing things the British government has said – that concrete ‘proof’ of Russian guilt in the Skripal case is not needed because Russia’s guilt can be presumed from Russia’s previous conduct.

Putting aside that there are conflicting opinions about Russia’s previous conduct, it is actually a further breach of due process to declare someone guilty not on evidence but on the basis of their previous conduct.

Putting that aside there have been at least three cases since The Duran was founded in May 2016 when declarations of Russian guilt which were confidently asserted proved on proper examination of the evidence to be untrue.

(1) On 19th September 2016 an attack on a humanitarian convoy in Syria was widely blamed by Western governments and by the Western media on Russia.  Yet a UN inquiry headed by an Indian military officer effectively cleared Russia of responsibility for the attack.

(2) In a succession of reports Professor Richard McLaren has claimed to have found proof of a gigantic government organised state sponsored doping conspiracy amongst athletes in Russia.

These claims have been enthusiastically repeated by the Western media, and led to partial bans on Russian participation in the 2016 Summer Olympics in Rio de Janeiro, on the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, and to a complete ban on Russian participation in the 2016 Summer Paralympic Games in Rio de Janeiro.

However the Schmid Commission, which on behalf of the International Olympic Committee, carried out a thorough review of Professor McLaren’s claims of a government organised state sponsored doping conspiracy in Russia, concluded that those claims had not been proved to be true.

(3) The third case is more controversial, but I personally have no doubt that the same applies.

Since at least the summer of 2016 it has been repeatedly and confidently claimed that there was a vast conspiracy between Russia and Donald Trump’s campaign to steal the US Presidential election from Hillary Clinton and to swing it to Donald Trump.

The House Intelligence Committee, having investigated this claim in detail, now says it is untrue.

Though the Mueller investigation, which is also looking in this claim, has yet to report, none of the indictments it has issued suggest that this claim is true, whilst it seems the Senate Intelligence Committee, which is also investigating the claim, is also going to report that the claim is untrue.

Here we have three examples of claims of wrongful activity confidently made against Russia proving to be untrue.  Why then assume that the claim of wrongful activity made against Russia in the Skripal case is true?

Obviously presumptions of guilt based on claims of previous Russian misconduct are wrong and unsafe, and that whole approach must be abandoned as both flawed and ethically wrong.

I would finish by repeating a point I have before.

Underpinning the regular allegations made in the West about Russian misconduct including the ones now being made in connection with the Skripal case is the intense Western prejudice against Russia and against all things Russian.

I discussed this Western prejudice against Russia and Russians in detail in a long article The Duran published on 12th October 2016, and I discussed it again more recently in articles I have written about a recent report by a group of US Democratic Party Senators targeting Russia, and about the Hollywood film Red Sparrow which is currently on general release.

Now we see further examples of this prejudice with the demand in the Skripal case that Russia be denied the right to defend itself, a right which every other defendant accused of a crime has.

Personally I cannot see a more straightforward example of prejudice against Russia than that.

The Duran

 

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Maria Zakharova completely rubbishes Britain’s anti-Russia campaign on national TV – By Paul Antonopoulos FRN (Fort Russ News) (SOTT)

Maria Zakharova

© Facebook
Maria Zakharova

Maria Zakharova, Director of the Information and Press Department of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for the Russian Federation, on Russian national television has completely rubbished the British anti-Russian campaign in response to the Salisbury assassination attempt.

She questioned why normal protocol was not undertaken if a deadly chemical agent was used to try and kill Russian traitor Sergei Skripal, 66, and his daughter Yulia Skripal, 33.

Both people remain critically ill in hospital after they were found unconscious on a bench in the picturesque town of Salisbury in southern England.

British Prime Minister Theresa May believes Moscow is “culpable” in the assassination attempt despite not being able to provide any evidence.

Watch all of Zakharova’s crusade against British inconsistencies in the video.

click below if having problems with watching this video =

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Framing Putin – Saga of the Spy and the Nerve Agent – By Chris Kanthan (Sott.net)

Putin Theresa May

How dumb are the masses of the world? One need only look at the brazen, obvious false flag incidents that the elites keep piling on. Trained to be consumers of sensational news, the idiotic population of the West simply accepts allegations without thinking or analysis.

Let’s take a brief look at the claim that Putin/Kremlin/Russia used a deadly chemical weapon (called “Novichok”) against an ex-Russian spy who has been living in the UK for eight years. Within hours of the incident, the UK foreign minister – bozo Boris Johnson – claimed that Russia was behind the attack. Then Theresa May said it’s “highly likely” that Russia did it; and everyone translated that into “definitely Russia did it.” Now, of course, crazed warmonger Nikki Haley has joined the chorus and even tells people that Russia may use chemical weapons in New York.

Who has Novichok? Yes, Novichok was invented and produced by the USSR in the 1970s and 80s. But that was 30+ years ago. Hello! Did anyone take the time to wonder if it’s now possible for others to possess or make it?

Who’s Got CW? Russia got rid of all its chemical weapons under the supervision of OPCW. On the other hand, the US hasn’t destroyed all its chemical weapons yet and there are still two CW sites in the US! The US government claims it will destroy them within the next five years. Sure.

Samples Everywhere: The fact is that many labs around the world have samples of that deadly agent. It so happens that there is a UK military chemical lab in Porton Down, just a few miles from where the alleged incident took place. Each lab has a signature attached to it. If the UK wanted to be credible, it would release the samples to third parties – Russia and OPCW – so they can analyze it and see where it came from. But the UK refuses to do so. Wonder why.

Guess Who Lives in the US: The “father” of Novichok defected to the US a long time ago and lives there today. He brags about it openly on his Facebook page. His name is Vil Mirzayanov.

Vil Mirzayanov

The Formula is Well Known: This guy also wrote a book and revealed the composition of the chemical agent.

Vil Mirzayanov State secrets

Did the CIA get Hold of Novichok? The Novichok nerve agent was actually produced in a lab in Uzbekistan, which became a separate country after the fall of the Soviet Union in 1991. Then it became very close to the US. As this 1999 New York Times article reveals, the US worked with the Uzbek government to dismantle the lab and helped many scientists emigrate/defect to the US. So, it’s safe to say that the CIA and the US military have Novichok. (Think of Operation PaperClip when Nazi scientists were brought into the US after World War II).

Is it possible that the entire story is bogus? This nerve agent is supposed to be super deadly, but the UK government advised people near the area to use “baby wipes”, “warm water” and “detergents” to clean their belongings. Really?

And then if you look at the photos of experts at the site, there are these guys in hazmat suits for visual impact. Then, along with them are UK cops without any protective gear. Maybe they had baby wipes with them? It’s just like the nonsensical White Helmets story where they handle “Sarin gas victims” with bare hands. (Oh, btw, the White Helmets got millions of $$ of funding from the UK government).

Motives, Opportunities: In any crime, we must look at the motives and opportunities. The only ones to benefit from this are the West – US, UK, Israel and the globalists. These warmongers are just mad that Putin is helping Assad and ruining their psychotic plans for Middle East domination.

The Russian spy – Sergei Skripal – was a traitor who got arrested in 2004 for leaking state secrets to the UK. He was released in 2010 and sent to the UK as part of a spy-swap program. So Putin had 6 years to kill the guy in the Russian prison. But no! Putin would release him, wait for 8 more years, and then kill him in the most bizarre way possible just before the World Cup and just before the Russian presidential election. My God! Who believes this nonsense?

The only ones to benefit from this asymmetric propaganda war are Putin’s enemies.

How this idiotic country, the UK, once gave birth to Shakespeare and then ruled the entire world is a mystery indeed. If in 2018, people believe such idiotic fairy tales, we are doomed to have World War III soon.

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Chris Kanthan (Profile)

Chris Kanthan is the author of a new book, Deconstructing the Syrian war.. Chris lives in the San Francisco Bay Area, has traveled to 35 countries, and writes about world affairs, politics, economy and health. His other book is Deconstructing Monsanto.. Follow him on Twitter: @GMOChannel

Russia’s Reaction to the Insults of the West is Political Suicide – by Peter Koenig for the Saker blog

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by Peter Koenig for the Saker blog

The onslaught of western Russia bashing in the past days, since the alleged poison attack by a Soviet-era nerve agent, Novichok (the inventor of which, by the way, lives in the US), on a Russian double agent, Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, has been just horrifying. Especially by the UK. Starting with PM May, who outright accused Russia of using chemical weapons (CW) on UK grounds, without delivering any evidence. Strangely, there is no indication where Skripal and his daughter are, in which hospital the pair is being treated, no poison analysis is being published, they cannot be visited; there is absolutely no evidence of the substance they allegedly have been poisoned with – do Sergei and Yulia actually exist?

As a consequence, Theresa May expels 23 Russian diplomats, who have to leave the UK within a week. Then came Boris Johnson, the Foreign Minister clown, also an abject liar. He said, no he yelled, at his fellow parliamentarians that it was “Overwhelmingly likely, that Putin personally ordered the spy attack.” This accusation out of nothing against the Russian President is way more than a deep breach in diplomatic behavior, it is a shameful insult. – And no evidence is provided. Putin’s spokesman, Dmitry Peskov, in fact, said that Johnson’s personal attack on President Putin was “unforgivable”.

Not to miss out on the bashing theatre, UK Defense Secretary, Gavin Williamson, got even more insolent, Russia “should go away and shut up”. In response to all this demonizing Russia for an alleged crime, for which absolutely no proof has been provided, Russia’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman, Maria Zakharova, said that the undiplomatic comments meant that the British authorities are nervous and have “something to hide,”. Lavrov also strongly objected, wanted to initiate a joint UK-Russia investigation into the case – is he dreaming? – and responded to a question of diplomatic retaliation, yes, that Russia will also expel UK diplomates ‘soon’.

There is no doubt that the UK acted as Washington’s poodle. In the course of this anti-Russia tirade, Trump twittered that he fully supported UK’s position. Indeed, the European puppets, Macron, Merkel, May and their chief, The Donald, signed a joint statement blaming Russia for the nerve gas attack on the former double agent, “There is no plausible alternative explanation than that Russia was to blame for the attack”. Bingo, that says it all. The presstitute picks it up and airs it to the seven corners of this globe – and the western sheeple are brainwashed once again: The Russian did it.

Well we know that. But the real point I want to make is that Russia always reacts to such nonsensical and outright false accusations; Russia always responds, rejects of course the accusations but usually with lengthy explanations, and with suggestions on how to come to the truth – as if the UK and the west would give a shit about the truth – why are they doing that? Why are you Russia, even responding?

That is foolish sign of weakness. As if Russia was still believing in the goodness of the west, as if it just needed to be awakened. What Russia is doing, every time, not just in this Skripal case, but in every senseless and ruthless attack, accusations about cyber hacking, invading Ukraine, annexing Crimea, and not to speak about the never-ending saga of Russia-Gate, Russian meddling and hacking into the 2016 US Presidential elections, favoring Trump over Hillary. Everybody with a half brain knows it’s a load of crap. Even the FBI and CIA said that there was no evidence. So, why even respond? Why even trying to undo the lies, convince the liars that they, Russia, are not culpable?

Every time the west notices Russia’s wanting to be a “good neighbor” – about which the west really couldn’t care less, Russia makes herself more vulnerable, more prone to be accused and attacked and more slandered.

Why does Russia not just break away from the west? Instead of trying to ‘belong’ to the west? Accept that you are not wanted in the west, that the west only wants to plunder your resources, your vast landmass, they want to provoke you into a war where there are no winners, a war that may destroy entire Mother Earth, but they, the ZionAnglo handlers of Washington, dream that their elite will survive to eventually take over beautiful grand Russia. That’s what they want. The Bashing is a means towards the end. The more people are with hem, the easier it is to launch an atrocious war.

The Skripal case is typical. The intensity with which this UK lie-propaganda has been launched is exemplary. It has brought all of halfwit Europe – and there is a lot of them – under the spell of Russia hating. Nobody can believe that May Merkel, Macron are such blatant liars… that is beyond what they have been brought up with. A lifelong of lies pushed down their throats, squeezed into their brains. Even if something tells them – this is not quite correct, the force of comfort, not leaving their comfort zone- not questioning their own lives – is so strong that they rather cry for War, War against Russia, War against the eternal enemy of mankind. – I sadly remember in my youth in neutral Switzerland, the enemy always, but always came from the East. He was hiding behind the “Iron Curtain”.

The West is fabricating a new Iron Curtain. But while doing that, they don’t realize they are putting a noose around their own neck. Russia doesn’t need the west, but the west will soon be unable to survive without the East, the future is in the east – and Russia is an integral part of the East, of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO), that encompasses half the world’s population and controls a third of the world’s economic output.

Mr. Putin, you don’t need to respond to insults from the west, because that’s what they are, abusive insults. The abject slander that Johnson boy threw at you is nothing but a miserable insult; you don’t need to respond to this behavior. You draw your consequences.

Dear President Putin, Dear Mr. Lavrov, Let them! Let them holler. Let them rot in their insanity. – Respond to the UK no longer with words but with deeds, with drastic deeds. Close their embassy. Give all embassy staff a week to vacate your country, then you abolish and eviscerate the embassy the same way the US abolished your consulates in Washington and San Francisco – a bit more than a year ago. Surely you have not forgotten. Then you give all Brits generously a month to pack up and leave your beautiful country (it can be done – that’s about what Washington is forcing its vassals around the globe to do with North Korean foreign laborers); block all trade with the UK (or with the entire West for that matter), block all western assets in Russia, because that’s the first thing the western plunderers will do, blocking Russian assets abroad. Stealing is in their blood.

Mr. Putin, You don’t need to respond to their lowly abusive attacks, slanders, lies. You and Russia are way above the level of this lowly western pack. Shut your relation to the west. You have China, the SCO, the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), Russia is part of the OBI – President Xi’s One Belt Initiative – the multi-trillion development thrive, emanating from China, connecting continents – Asia, Africa, Europe, South America – with infrastructure, trade, creating hundreds of millions of decent jobs, developing and promoting science and culture and providing hundreds of millions of people with a decent life.

What would the west do, if suddenly they had no enemy, because the enemy has decided to ignore them and take a nap? China will join you.

Everything else, responding, justifying, explaining, denying the most flagrant lies, trying to make them believe in the truth is not only a frustrating waste of time, it’s committing political suicide. You will never win. The west gives a hoot about the truth – they have proven that for the last two thousand years or more. And in all that time, not an iota of conscience has entered the west’s collective mind. The west cannot be trusted. Period.

Peter Koenig is an economist and geopolitical analyst. He is also a former World Bank staff and worked extensively around the world in the fields of environment and water resources. He lectures at universities in the US, Europe and South America. He writes regularly for Global Research; ICH; RT; Sputnik; PressTV; The 21st Century; TeleSUR; The Vineyard of The Saker Blog; and other internet sites. He is the author of Implosion – An Economic Thriller about War, Environmental Destruction and Corporate Greed – fiction based on facts and on 30 years of World Bank experience around the globe. He is also a co-author of The World Order and Revolution! – Essays from the Resistance.

‘Fishwife’s rhetoric’ reveals ‘intellectual impotence’ of UK Defense Secretary – Russian MoD – By RT

'Fishwife’s rhetoric' reveals 'intellectual impotence' of UK Defense Secretary – Russian MoD
By telling Russia to “shut up,” UK Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson has revealed his “extreme intellectual impotence” and underlined the vanity of British accusations against Moscow, Russia’s Defense Ministry said.

“Fishwife’s rhetoric demonstrated today by the head of the British Defense Ministry Gavin Williamson, perfectly characterizes an extreme degree of his intellectual impotence,” the Defense Ministry said in a statement.

The Russian side hit back at Williamson after his Thursday comments, when he said that the country “should go away and shut up.” That was the Defence Secretary’s reaction to the question about possible countermeasures by Moscow in response to the British sanctions over the poisoning of former double agent Sergei Skripal in Salisbury in early March.

The vocabulary employed by the UK defense secretary “only confirms the vanity of all of London’s accusations against Russia… but also the total pettiness of the ‘accusers’ themselves,” the MoD pointed out.

A “cozy home” of “fake sensations,” that’s how the ministry called the UK, referring to Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and the White Helmets. “Therefore we’ve developed a strong immunity to London’s fake accusations of Russia.”

“As for the boorish expressions by the UK Defense Secretary regarding Russia, in the absence of actual results of his official activities, apparently, they alone remain in the arsenal of Her Majesty’s Armed Forces,” the MoD said.

Earlier, Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova said that Williamson’s outburst showed that British authorities were nervous and had “something to hide.”

“What could he say, the defense minister of a country that conceals information on the use of chemical-warfare agents on its soil?” she wrote on Facebook, refereeing to London’s refusal to provide evidence in the Skripal case to Moscow.

READ MORE: Defense secretary’s reaction shows UK is worrying, has something to hide – Moscow

Williamson’s remarks were also ridiculed online by many in the UK who expressed their concerns over the British Armed Forces being headed by “a pre-pubescent schoolboy” who comes up with threats one would be “more likely to hear on the playground.”

READ MORE: ‘Straight off the playground’: UK defence sec ridiculed for ‘childish’ Russia remarks

Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia remain in critical but stable condition after being discovered slumped on a bench in Salisbury in early March. Authorities in the UK claim a Soviet-era nerve agent called Novichok was used in the attack on the former Russian-UK double agent. Russia denied any involvement in the incident.

UK Prime Minister Theresa May rushed to accuse Russia of using a chemical weapon on British soil and confronted Moscow with an ultimatum to reveal the details of the Skripal plot. The demand was rejected and, on Wednesday, the UK imposed sanctions on Moscow, which included the expulsion of 23 diplomats, limiting ties and freezing Russian state assets in the UK.

Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, said that UK diplomats will “definitely” be expelled from the country in response to the move by London. However, Moscow stressed that it was open to cooperation with the UK on the Skripal case if it is treated as an equal partner in the probe.

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