At Russia’s National Grain Centre, I ask Vladimir Putin: “Is Russia behind the poisoning of Sergei Skripal?” pic.twitter.com/5ve7U82Hwa
— Steve Rosenberg (@BBCSteveR) March 13, 2018
Steve Rosenberg, the BBC’s Moscow correspondent, has guts.
The veteran journalist confronted Russian President Vladimir Putin at point blank range on Monday — after the U.K. government said it was “highly likely” the Kremlin was behind the nerve agent attack on a former Russia spy.
“The government has concluded that it is highly likely that Russia was responsible for the act” against Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, who were left in critical condition after last week’s poisoning.
And as Putin strolled through Russia’s National Grain Centre, Rosenberg put it directly to the Russian president: “Is Russia behind the poisoning of Sergei Skripal?”
“Look, we’re busy here with agriculture,” Putin replied. “As you can see, the aim is to create good conditions for people’s lives, and you ask me about some tragedies. Get to the bottom of things here first, and then we’ll talk about this.”
Well that’s not a no!
Skripal was previously jailed by Russia for “treason” after it discovered he was working as a double-agent for MI6 during his time in the GRU military intelligence service. Skripal was given refuge in Britain as part of an exchange in 2010, and settled with his family in Salisburg, U.K. — where he was the victim of last week’s nerve agent attack that left more than a dozen others injured.
[image via screengrab]