Moscow has chosen to remain completely defiant as it shrugs off the UK deadline to give a suitable explanation on its role in the nerve-agent attack on a former spy and his daughter in Salisbury. Russia has demanded a sample of the agent used in the attack as a pre-requisite to starting the probe in Russia. Prime Minister Theresa May had categorically stated the high prospects of direct Russian involvement in the attack. This has further worsened the already strained ties as PM May has threatened appropriate retaliation.
Russia has however completely denied any involvement in the case and thus has dismissed all warnings by the UK. President Trump has also pledged to offer any kind of assistance to the UK for carrying out the probe. Trump reiterated the urgency of unambiguous answers by Russian Federation on the matter. Earlier this week, Britain had identified the substance used in the poisoning as a nerve-agent of Novichok class. Latter was a military grade weapon used by the Soviet Union in the 1970s and 80s.
Russian Foreign Minister stated that Russia is ready to cooperate in the investigation if the UK fulfils its legal international obligations like Chemical Weapons Convention which allows the country where the production of the banned substance took place to be granted 10 days to respond and also be given access to the substance under question. Russia will not abide by any deadline unless they are given access to the substance. British has maintained that it will proceed with the retaliation if Russia does not give a credible reply. PM May is now facing intense pressure to take stern measures and seek a collective response from both EU and NATO, as the gruesome attack took place in a cathedral city of 45,000 people.
Russia has tried to deny the allegations using Nikolai Kovalev, the former director of spy service which had arrested Mr Skripal. Latter stated that Mr Skripal had been awarded a 13-year sentence on accounts of spying for British intelligence in 2004 but was later pardoned in 2010 in a spy swap. Kovalev added that it is unusual Russia will wait for 10 years to kill a guilty spy whom it could have punished at the right moment.