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Russia: 'Absurd' to Link It to Nerve Agent Death of British Woman


FILE - Russian President Vladimir Putin's spokesman Dmitry Peskov is seen at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, March 27, 2017.

Britain's defense minister is blaming Russia for the death of a woman poisoned by the same nerve agent used against an ex-Russian spy and his daughter in March.

"The simple reality is that Russia has committed an attack on British soil, which has seen the death of a British citizen," Defense Secretary Gavin Williamson told parliament Monday. "That is something I think the world will unite with us in actually condemning."

Russia said it is "absurd" to think it had anything to do with the woman's death.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Russia is "deeply concerned about the ongoing poisoning incidents on British soil" but said he has no information on Russia being involved.

British police have opened a murder investigation after Dawn Sturgess, 44, died in a hospital in Salisbury, in southern England.

She fell sick on June 30 along with another victim, Charles Rowley, who is hospitalized in critical condition.

FILE - A general view shows the main entrance to Salisbury District Hospital, in Salisbury, southern England, July 4, 2018, where a British woman, Dawn Sturgess, poisoned with a nerve agent, died Sunday.
FILE - A general view shows the main entrance to Salisbury District Hospital, in Salisbury, southern England, July 4, 2018, where a British woman, Dawn Sturgess, poisoned with a nerve agent, died Sunday.

Police say both were poisoned with Novichok — the same substance that poisoned former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Julia in March. Both survived.

Britain has blamed Russia for the Skripal poisonings — a charge Russia denies.

Police suspect Sturgess and Rowley picked up vial that contained the poison, and are trying to find out exactly what they found and where.

British Home Secretary Sajid Javid visited the Salisbury region Saturday to assure residents that the chances of getting sick from a nerve agent are very slight.

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