20:24 GMT +322 January 2020
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    Dawn Sturgess and her boyfriend, Charlie Rowley were taken to a Salisbury hospital a week ago. According to the police statement, Mr. Rowley who was also taken ill following exposure to the nerve agent remains in critical condition.

    One of two victims, allegedly exposed to a nerve agent in the UK city of Amesbury, has died in a local hospital, the UK Metropolitan Police have said earlier. Police don't know at the moment how the couple was exposed to the nerve agent, alleged to be A-234, but which British authorities refer to as Novichok.

    Sputnik spoke to Dr. Tara McCormack, lecturer of politics at the University of Leicester about the case and questioned her about the UK government's position and their allegations.

    READ MORE: UK Defense Secretary Blames Russia for Death of Woman in Amesbury

    Sputnik: What questions does the UK government face in terms of security?

    Dr. Tara McCormack: One of the problems is we still don't know what happened with the Skripals. We have statements from the Home Secretary, there is no plausible explanation other than the line that the Russian state did it, actually, it is not the case that there is no other plausible explanation; there is a sufficient number of questions about the government's argument.

    So, we certainly do need a proper criminal investigation but one has been ongoing for the past 4 months and we are still no closer, we still have no evidence of what happened. So there seems to be some problem here with failures to investigate the matter.

    Sputnik: Are Salisbury/ Amesbury really safe from Porton Down?

    Dr. Tara McCormack: We have no evidence at all to what happened to the Skripals. There are questions raised as to the 4-month clean-up operation and the criminal investigation. It seems this couple, it seems but we do not know, this couple discovered some receptacle or something. But the reality is, we don't know. But the fact this has happened after 4 months does raise some questions about both in terms of the criminal investigation & the clean-up operation.

    READ MORE: UK Police Say Have No Evidence Linking Amesbury Incident to Skripal Poisoning

    Sputnik:  Looking head what pressure can you see Theresa May putting on President Trump during his visit and NATO summit?

    Dr. Tara McCormack:  It's really difficult to tell, because I don't think anyone is suggesting this couple was targeted it seems to be clear that is assumed they discovered a discarded substance, they were not targeted for murder. It's difficult to know as we had the grand expulsion of Russian diplomats and tit-for-tat with Russia. So it's difficult to know what can be done now.

    READ MORE: Amesbury Couple's Friend Opens Up About Last Meeting on Eve of Poisoning

    But we have also had the German Parliament has heard from the German government that Britain has presented no evidence at all to Germany about the British claims about who attempted to poison the Skripals. So it's difficult to know whether that will be a brake on further action or not.

    The views and opinions expressed by Dr. Tara McCormack are those of the speaker and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.

    poisoning, Yulia Skripal, Sergei Skripal, Amesbury, Salisbury, United Kingdom
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