The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) started analyzing the substance that poisoned former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Salisbury, the UK. Will the organization be able to stay unbiased and impartial or will it succumb to pressure and turn into a feeble semblance of the International Olympic Committee?
Ahmet Uzumcu, Director General of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), said on March 20 that the OPCW sent its experts to the United Kingdom where they will collect samples for their subsequent analysis at OPCW's laboratories. The analysis of the samples may take from two to three weeks, the official said.
In the meantime, British Prime Minister Theresa May is trying to convince other EU countries to expel Russian diplomats by providing some secret data that prove Moscow's involvement in the Salisbury attack.
Former member of the UN Commission on Biological and Chemical Weapons in Iraq and Libya, expert of the Supreme Ecological Council, Igor Nikulin, told Pravda.Ru that there is still hope for professionalism of OPCW experts.
Chemists at Porton Down chemical laboratory have already experienced this pressure on their own skin. According to them, the poison that was used in Salisbury was a substance developed in the USSR, but not in Russia, Igor Nikulin told Pravda.Ru. In his opinion, the British could receive the substance from the Americans, who had earlier disposed of the chemical factory in Uzbekistan.
According to Igor Nikulin, this version is confirmed by the man who created the Novichok formula. Vil Mirzayanov, who escaped from the USSR to the United States, said in an interview with the Voice of America that he had given away everything. That's why the British were able to identify the poison agent so quickly. "It would have taken them weeks otherwise," the expert told Pravda.Ru.
Psychic attack on Russia
Igor Nikulin believes that Russia and the UK are not going to terminate diplomatic relations. "The UK will not impose sanctions on Russia single-handedly, because such a move would take Russian assets from the country. If they try to nationalize them, the property of British companies in Russia will be nationalized too, and this is very big money," the expert told Pravda.Ru.
"Russia has been under a psychic attack. One will not be able to restore relations quickly, of course, but by and large, there will be no long-term consequences coming," Igor Nikulin said.
Professor of the Diplomatic Academy of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation Lev Klepatsky told Pravda.Ru that Russia would have to endure this psychological attack. According to the professor, London may find support in other European countries. The Baltic States will join the campaign for sure, because they always like to join something that stinks (Lithuania has already supported the UK - ed.). "In a thievish gang, everyone supports each other, regardless of whether their partners did something right or wrong. This is something that we can now see in the European Union and NATO," the expert told Pravda.Ru.
It is worthy of note that the OPCW has received almost 370 reports on the use of poisonous substances during military operations in Syria. More than 70 reports have been studied. For example, the OPCW provided a report to the UN about the use of sarin gas in Syria's Khan-Shaykhun on April 4, 2017 and mustard gas in Umm Hosh on September 15-16, 2016. OPCW experts concluded that in the first case sarin was used by government forces, whereas in the second case mustard gas was used by ISIL* terrorists. Russia expressed huge doubts about the evidence that the experts provided due to the bias of sources and non-compliance with requirements of the Convention on the prohibition of chemical weapons.
*terrorist organization banned in Russia
Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru