In its statement, the Russian embassy in London responded to the creation of the new Russia Coordination Group in the UK Parliament, pointing to its anti-Russian basis.
"Instead of looking for ways to restore the Russo-British relationship or at least keeping channels of communications open, Parliament is letting itself to be drawn into another Russophobic campaign launched by the Conservative government," the embassy said.
The decision to set up the group was made following the initiative by Tom Tugendhat MP, Chair of the Foreign Affairs Committee. The MPs are meant to coordinate "Committee work relating to the scrutiny of Russian-related activity."
.@DamianCollins, Chair of @CommonsCMS, will be part of a new group of Select Committee Chairs called the Russia Co-ordination Group, co-ordinating inquiry work to scrutinise Russian government activities and the UK's response. Our work on #FakeNews here >https://t.co/VR1nloDh49 https://t.co/ct4r1ym0VM— Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee (@CommonsCMS) April 20, 2018
According to Mr. Tugendhat, it is essential that "we understand the extent of Putin's activity" and "Parliament is well-placed to do this."
"You have to take every possible precaution, and when you look at what Russia has done, not just in this country, in Salisbury, attacks on TV stations, on the democratic processes, on critical national infrastructure — of course we have to be very, very cautious indeed."
During a press conference on April 20, Russian ambassador to the UK Alexander Yakovenko said that presenting allegations of cybersecurity threats posed by Russia in the UK publicly and without any proof is "reckless, provocative and unfounded policy."
"Our bilateral relations have reached a new low after the British government accused Russia of poisoning Sergei and Yulia Skripal. Political contacts have been frozen by the British side. Russia is threatened by a new wave of sanctions. Alleged "Cyber threats from Russia" have again been exploited for political purposes," the embassy said in response to the establishment of The Russia Co-ordination Group.
The effort by British politicians to keep tabs on Russia and the "growing threat" it poses via the new inter-committee group won't help changing tense relations between the two nations — quite to the contrary, the embassy added. That is despite many Brits actually opposing the government's policy on Russia.
Despite the best efforts by elites to revive “Project Fear” re Russia many people in UK still wouldn’t buy it. Quite a few feel that demonizing Russia is not a policy, and not even a proper excuse for lack of one. pic.twitter.com/oZZvcdTS5e— Russian Embassy, UK (@RussianEmbassy) April 23, 2018
Luckily the older generation still remember going through the cold war and do not want a repeat of living with nuclear war hanging over them day and night. The young mainly don't bother with the government agenda driven media and prefer their news off the internet.— Derek Maher (@DerekMaher3) April 23, 2018
If evidence of Russia evolvement existed in the Skripal case, it would have been released long ago. The fact that @theresa_may and the UK government have failed to produce anything is testament to nothing more than pure scaremongering tactics.— Thomas Fallsas (@ThomasFallsas) April 23, 2018
I'm from Scotland and haven't met one person up here who believes the UKs version of events you have our support.— Cybernat2015 (@Cybernat2015) April 23, 2018
Ties between Moscow and Britain have been strained, following the poisoning of the former Russian intelligence officer Sergey Skripal and his daughter Yulia in the English city of Salisbury. London was quick to accuse Moscow of being behind the poisoning with the use of the A234 nerve agent. Russia has refuted all allegations and pointed at the complete lack of evidence provided to support such claims.