Murder probe raises stakes in nerve agent case

Murder probe raises stakes in nerve agent case

Glen told BBC radio the two may have handled a contaminated object due to their "habit of looking into bins" and police were trying to work out "how they came into contact with this nerve agent and when".

Detectives are working to identify the source of the contamination, police said, but a source has not yet been established.

The Skripals have been released from hospital but the investigation into the attack on them continues.

There is no evidence that Sturgess and the other victim visited any of the sites that had been decontaminated after the Skripals' poisoning, police said, adding that they could not say whether the nerve agent came from the same batch as the one the Skripals came in contact with.

They can not absolutely rule out this is a separate case even though there is no reason Mr Rowley and Ms Sturgess would be targeted in the way the Skripals were - and the close proximity between the two cases clearly points to something having been left behind from the first. Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, the head of Britain's counter-terror police, said that Miss Sturgess' death is being treated as murder but admitted they still haven't found the vessel containing one of the world's deadliest poisons.

Theresa May paid tribute to Ms Sturgess in the Commons, saying: "I am sure the House will join me in sending our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Dawn Sturgess who passed away last night".

"The Government is committed to providing full support to the local community as it deals with this tragedy", she wrote in a second tweet. Rowley, 45, remains in critical condition.

The 44-year-old died on Sunday evening at Salisbury District hospital, Scotland Yard has confirmed.

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A police officer sought medical advice Saturday in connection with the ongoing investigation of the nerve agent exposure, but was given the "all clear", according to Wiltshire Police.

Peskov's remarks were in line with repeated Kremlin denials of Russian involvement in the March poisoning of Sergei and Yulia Skripal with Novichok in the southern English city of Salisbury.

Britain maintains the March attack on the Skripals had been ordered by the Russian government, a charge denied by representatives of Russian President Vladimir Putin. Moscow has rejected the accusations and has hit back by expelling Western diplomats.

Mr Basu said the death of Ms Sturgess had "only served to strengthen the resolve of our investigation team as we work to identify those responsible for this outrageous, reckless and barbaric act".

Nerve agents kill by affecting the nervous system in various ways.

The death of a British citizen, caused by a Soviet-era nerve agent that could have been brought to English soil by Russians, comes at a particularly sensitive time.

"A lethal dose ... and the person will die immediately".

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