UK Prime Minister Teresa May "has gone too far" by accusing Russia of its involvement in the alleged poisoning of former Russian intelligence officer Sergei Skripal, Jean-Pierre Raffarin, former head of the French government, told France's LCI television channel.
He stressed that first and foremost, it is necessary to wait until the completion of an investigation into the matter.
Calling for refraining from escalating the situation, Raffarin pointed out that the Kremlin perceives the Skripal case-related accusations as "a factor of the Western world's violence and aggression against Russia."
Earlier, May claimed that Moscow was "highly likely" to be behind the alleged poisoning attack of ex-Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia in Britain's Salisbury on March 4. Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova described May's the accusations as a "circus show in the UK's parliament".
Moscow vehemently rejects all the accusations of its involvement in the Skripal case, saying that such groundless claims are unacceptable.
Russia's envoy to the European Union Vladimir Chizhov, for his part, has warned against using the "language of ultimatums" with respect to Moscow after May demanded Moscow's explanation for Skripal's alleged poisoning by the end of Tuesday.
In the latest development, May has announced the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats from Britain, something that the Russian Embassy in London described as "unacceptable, short-sighted and unjustified."