EU backs UK after PM asks Russia for answers on ex-spy's alleged poisoning
Emergency services attend a property in Winterslow near Salisbury in Britain, Mar. 12, 2017. EPA-EFE FILE/NEIL HALL
Valdis Dombrovskis gives a press conference at the European Commission in Brussels, Belgium, Mar. 12, 2018. EPA-EFE FILE/STEPHANIE LECOCQ
Brussels, Mar 13 (efe-epa).- The vice president of the European Commission on Tuesday said the European Union stood by the United Kingdom, whose Prime Minister recently denounced that Russia was most likely behind the alleged poisoning of a former spy on British soil.
Theresa May had announced Monday that former double agent Sergei Skripal, 66, and his daughter, 33, who both remained in critical condition, were believed to have been poisoned with Novichok, a group of nerve agents developed by the Soviet Union, and that Moscow was highly likely behind the attack.
On his approach to a meeting of EU finance and economy ministers on Tuesday, EC vice president Valdis Dombrovskis said: "We are very much concerned with the situation and with the findings the UK has so far and of course the UK can count with EU solidarity."
The commissioner for economic and financial affairs, Pierre Moscovici, said the issue was being followed closely by the bloc, though the alleged poisoning or any potential future sanctions on Russia would not be a topic of discussion in the meeting.
Skripal and his daughter were found slumped over on a bench in Salisbury on Mar. 4 by a police officer, who was also later hospitalized and is believed to be under the effects of the same nerve agent.
Moscow has continuously denied any knowledge of or involvement in the incident, with some authorities even claiming that the UK had attacked the ex-spy in order to foster anti-Russian sentiments.