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Survivor of Novichok exposure that killed lover out of hospital

By Isabel Togoh

Novichok victim Charlie Rowley has been released from hospital.

The 45-year-old was discharged from Salisbury District Hospital yesterday after being admitted on June 30.

Lorna Wilkinson, director of nursing at Salisbury NHS Foundation Trust, said: "I am pleased to confirm that earlier today Charlie Rowley was discharged from hospital."

She added: "We continue to work closely with Public Health England, who have advised that Charlie poses no risk to the community.

His partner Dawn Sturgess died on July 8.

The pair were exposed to the deadly nerve agent after touching a contaminated item with their hands.

They became ill at a property in Muggleton Road in Amesbury, eight miles from Salisbury.

Ms Wilkinson added: "It is also a day tinged with sadness for everyone as we remember Dawn Sturgess, who tragically lost her life. We continue to think both of Charlie and of Dawn's family, and support them as they go through the difficult process of coming to terms with her death."

Public Health England's Paul Cosford said: "We're pleased that Mr Rowley is well enough to leave hospital.

"For the avoidance of doubt, Mr Rowley's discharge creates no risk to anyone in the community.

"Our advice to the public remains unchanged. Do not pick up any items such as syringes, needles, cosmetics or similar objects made of materials such as metal, plastic or glass.

"If you didn't drop it, then don't pick it up."

Wiltshire Police Chief Constable Kier Pritchard said: "On behalf of all my officers, staff and volunteers, we welcome today's news that Charlie Rowley has been discharged from Salisbury District hospital.

"We wish him the best with his ongoing recovery.

"I would also like to pay tribute to the staff at Salisbury District Hospital for the outstanding care and compassion they have shown to everyone involved in both this incident and the incident in March.

"The last few months have had an unprecedented impact on all the local emergency services and partner agencies and the response from all has been outstanding."

In March Russian MI6 double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were exposed to Novichok in what was widely believed to have been an assassination attempt on the ex-spy.

Both survived after being left critically ill in hospital.

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