Daugh­ter of Rus­sian spy in nerve agent at­tack is now con­scious and speak­ing to med­i­cal staff

The Herald - - NEWS -

THE poi­soned daugh­ter of a Rus­sian dou­ble agent has re­port­edly re­gained con­scious­ness more than three weeks since the pair were tar­geted in a nerve agent at­tack.

Yu­lia Skri­pal was left crit­i­cally ill when ex­posed to Novi­chok on March 4 in Sal­is­bury, Wilt­shire, but is now said to be “im­prov­ing rapidly”.

Her fa­ther, the spy Sergei Skri­pal who sold in­for­ma­tion to the West, re­mains in a crit­i­cal but sta­ble con­di­tion in hospi­tal.

The BBC re­ports sep­a­rate sources have ver­i­fied Yu­lia is both con­scious and talk­ing.

Scot­land Yard be­lieves Mr Skri­pal and his daugh­ter, who was vis­it­ing him from Rus­sia, first came into con­tact with the deadly chem­i­cal at his home.

De­tailed foren­sic test­ing re­vealed the high­est con­cen­tra­tion of Novi­chok was found on the front door. Sus­pi­cions that the Krem­lin over­saw the as­sas­si­na­tion plot has had pro­found in­ter­na­tional reper­cus­sions.

Tit-for-tat diplo­matic ex­pul­sions were launched by Rus­sia on Thurs­day af­ter more than 130 sus­pected spies were or­dered out by Bri­tish al­lies.

Rus­sian for­eign min­is­ter Sergey Lavrov said Mos­cow would re­tal­i­ate by ex­pelling the same num­ber of diplo­mats that each coun­try had ejected.

“Rus­sia should not be act­ing like a vic­tim,” US State Depart­ment spokes­woman Heather Nauert said in re­sponse.

Mean­while, a vast at­tempted mur­der in­ves­ti­ga­tion con­tin­ues to un­fold in the Wilt­shire city, most re­cently lead­ing po­lice to cor­don off a chil­dren’s play area.

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