Skripal Crisis: Spain Unable to Act as Independent State Due to EU – Journalist

© Sputnik / Alexey Vitvitsky / Go to the photo bankFlags outside the building of the European Parliament in Strasbourg
Flags outside the building of the European Parliament in Strasbourg - Sputnik International
The poisoning of ex-GRU Colonel Sergei Skripal and his daughter in the UK last month was quickly blamed on Russia despite a lack of material evidence tying it to the attack. British Prime Minister Theresa May expelled 23 Russian diplomats shortly after the incident, with several other UK allies also imposing diplomatic sanctions against Russia.

Russia has repeatedly denied any involvement in the attack and responded to the wave of diplomatic sanctions imposed against it by many European and North American countries with retaliatory tit-for-tat measures.

Russian authorities have also called for a joint investigation with the UK to determine the source of the chemical agent used in the incident.

Spanish journalist for Descifrando la Guerra and other platforms Ina Garcia spoke to Sputnik about the handling of the investigation of the attack's by the UK government, and the following international response.

“It is surreal that a public body can make such a serious accusation about a government without conducting an independent and impartial investigation. It’s impossible to know if the Russian government had any involvement in the poisoning of Skripal as the international community has claimed without any evidence,” Ms. Garcia told Sputnik.

READ MORE: Skripal Poisoning: 'UK Could End Up Looking Very Foolish' – Former Guernsey MP

On the matter of Spain’s response – specifically, the expulsion of two Russia diplomats – the journalist warned that it was unable to set its own independent position on the matter, due to EU pressure.

“Spain has been dragged by the European Union in the Skripal issue. In international politics, even as a sovereign country, the Spanish government doesn’t have an independent position.  All the decisions it takes are either set by the EU and NATO, or at least are subject to pressure and influence from external parties,” she added.

“It’s impossible for Spain to act as an independent country because of the EU, but it has the right and duty to have demanded an investigation of what happened to Skripal before taking any action against Russian diplomats that could affect Spanish interests negatively.” 

View of the Moscow Kremlin from the Bolshoy Moskvoretsky Bridge. (File) - Sputnik International
Russia Expels Western States' Diplomats in Tit-for-Tat Measures Amid Skripal Row
Although the Russian government opted to only respond with tit-for-tat measures for now, the journalist warned that future economic sanctions could have adverse effects on the Spanish economy.

“As Spaniards, reprisals in the form of economic sanctions can directly affect us, we can't forget that in recent years Spain has attracted millions of dollars of investments from Russian businesses,” the journalist warned.

Ms. Garcia went on to suggest that other EU member states – who also expelled Russian diplomats – were similarly acting under pressure from the EU, and added that their response indicates a “lack of national sovereignty.”

READ MORE: London Admits Russia's Alleged Guilt in 'Skripal Case' Based on Assumptions

“I think the response of many EU member states shows how some European governments possess a lack of national sovereignty,” she concluded.

The views and opinions expressed by Ina Garcia are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

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