Russian spy poisoning inquiry widens after medics treat 21 people

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Officers investigating nerve gas poisoning begin major search at Sergei Skripal’s house and seal off a garage

The investigation into the attempted murder of Sergei Skripal has widened, as police sealed off the graves of his wife, Liudmila, and son, Alexander, and confirmed that a total of 21 people had been treated as a result of the incident.

The police officer who was exposed to the nerve agent used on the Skripals, named on Thursday as DS Nick Bailey, remained in a serious but stable condition.

Nerve agents are not hard to make in principle, but in practice it takes specialised facilities and training to mix the substances safely. The raw materials themselves are inexpensive and generally not hard to obtain, but the lethality of the agents means they tend to be manufactured in dedicated labs. The main five nerve agents are tabun, which is the easiest to make, sarin, soman, GF and VX. The latter was used to kill Kim Jong-nam, the half-brother of the North Korean leader, Kim Jong-un, at Kuala Lumpur airport last year. VX is particularly stable and can remain on clothing, furniture and the ground for a long time without proper decontamination.

Related: Police chief leads praise for officer poisoned in Russian spy attack

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Source: russia
Link : Russian spy poisoning inquiry widens after medics treat 21 people

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