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'Nerve agent used in Salisbury attack from group known as novichok': Theresa May

Prime Minister Theresa May has told the House of Commons that analysis of the nerve agent used in the attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury shows that it was from a group known as novichok

Making an oral statement on the latest information about the case to the Commons following a meeting of the Government's National Security Council, Mrs May told MPs: "It is now clear that Mr Skripal and his daughter were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent of a type developed by Russia.

"This is part of a group of nerve agents known as novichok.

"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."

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: "We need to continue seeking a robust dialogue with Russia on all the issues dividing our countries, both domestic and international - rather than simply cutting off contact and simply letting tensions and divisions get worse, and potentially even more dangerous."

He faced shouts of "shame" and "disgrace" from Conservative MPs as he told the Commons: "We're all familiar with the way huge fortunes, often acquired in the most dubious circumstances in Russia, sometimes connected with criminal elements, have ended up sheltering in London and trying to buy political influence in British party politics.

"Meddling in elections, as the Prime Minister put it, and there has been over £800,000 worth of donations to the Conservative Party from Russian oligarchs and their associates."

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