Litvinenko widow criticises government over Salisbury poisoning

Inquiry Into The Death By Poisoning Of Alexander Litvinenko Comes To A Close
Marina Litvinenko criticises government over Salisbury poisoning (Source: Getty)

The widow of murdered Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko has said that the UK government failed to learn lessons from the death of her husband in 2006.

Marina Litvinenko, whose husband died in London after drinking tea laced with radioactive polonium, has said that the poisoning of Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia last week showed that the government had failed to deliver on promises made following the inquiry into Litvinenko's death.

Speaking to the BBC today Marina Litvinenko said: “I believed it would never, ever happen again after the public inquiry provided evidence of the death of my husband. We had a meeting with Theresa May and a discussion about what we might achieve after the public inquiry verdict. After this meeting I received a letter. At the end it said 'I and this Government must continue to pursue justice for your husband’s killing and that we will take every step to protect the UK and its people from such a crime ever being repeated.'

“Unfortunately, it happened again. It means something was not done.”

Read more: Murder of Litvinenko "probably" approved by Putin

The public inquiry into Litvinenko's death, which published its report in 2016, said that he was poisoned in Mayfair's Millenium hotel by Russian security services, probably with the approval of Russian president Vladimir Putin.

Last week Russian defector Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned with a nerve agent in Salisbury. Both remain unconscious and in a critical condition.

Read more: Amber Rudd to chair second Cobra meeting over attack on former spy Skripal

A police officer who was one of the first on the scene is also in a serious condition in hospital but is now awake and talking.

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