The British Prime Minister, Theresa May said in response to a nerve agent attack on a Russian former double agent in southern England, Britain has expelled 23 Russian diplomats. May said on Wednesday, that it was the biggest single expulsion in over 30 years.
She told parliament that Britain would also freeze Russian state assets wherever there was evidence of a threat and downgrade its attendance at the soccer World Cup this summer.
Sergei Skripal, former spy, 66, and his daughter Yulia, 33, were found unconscious on a bench in the city of Salisbury on March 4 and remain in hospital in a critical condition.
The British Prime Minister has said the pair were attacked with Novichok, a Soviet-era military-grade nerve agent.
She had asked Moscow to explain whether it was responsible for the attack or had lost control of stocks of the highly dangerous substance.
Meanwhile, Russia has denied any involvement, and May told parliament Moscow had provided no credible explanation for the attack.
In her words, “There is no alternative conclusion, other than that the Russian state was culpable for the attempted murder of Skripal and his daughter, and for threatening the lives of other British citizens in Salisbury”.
“This represents an unlawful use of force by the Russian state against the UK.”
She said the expulsion of the 23 diplomats, identified as undeclared intelligence officers, was the biggest single expulsion for over 30 years and would degrade Russian intelligence capabilities in Britain for years to come.
“We will freeze Russian state assets wherever we have the evidence that they may be used to threaten the life or property of UK nationals or residents,” May said.
She said no ministers or members of the royal family would attend the World Cup in Russia.
Russia on her own side is not happy with the action of Britain threatens a retaliation for this singular actions.