The Czech president has bolstered Russia’s arguments that it had nothing to do with a nerve agent attack in Britain that caused international outrage.
Russian officials have welcomed comments by Milos Zeman that his country produced a small amount of the same type of nerve agent used to poison an ex-spy and his daughter.
Russian president Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said it was a “clear illustration of the groundless stance the British authorities have taken”.
The Czech president is known for pro-Russia views, but his country joined others in expelling Russian diplomats as a result of the poisoning.
Mr Peskov reiterated Russian arguments that other countries could have produced the nerve agent used against Sergei Skripal, 66, and his daughter Yulia, 33.
She has been discharged from hospital after the poisoning in Salisbury, Wiltshire, in March and her father is said to no longer be in a critical condition.
Britain blames Russia and international inspectors have confirmed Britain’s findings.