The parents of Dawn Sturgess, who died last July after allegedly being poisoned with the Novichok nerve agent in Amesbury, told The Guardian that they want justice from the UK government.
Stan and Caroline Sturgess said that they didn’t blame the death of their daughter on Russia, which British authorities have accused of being behind the toxin's development and carrying out an attack on ex-GRU agent Sergei Skripal four months prior to the Amesbury incident in neighbouring Salisbury.
“I want justice from our own government. What are they hiding? I don’t think they have given us all the facts. If anyone, I blame the government for putting Skripal in Salisbury”, Stan said.
Russian Embassy Shares Parent's Concern
Reacting to the interview, the Russian Embassy's spokesman shared the concern of Stan Sturgess, stressing that Dawn's cremation rules out the possibility of further investigation or the reverification of the reasons behind her death. As the spokesperson noted, a similar situation happened with the Skripal case.
Death of Sturgess
Back in late June-early July, UK police believed that Sturgess and her boyfriend, Charlie Rowley, had taken contaminated drugs, but later they claimed that they were exposed to a nerve agent, the same that was ostensibly used against Skripal and his daughter. While the Skripals and Rowley survived, Sturgess died on 8 July.
Dawn’s family told The Guardian that they believed Rowley when he said that the perfume bottle was in a sealed box, which is at odds with London’s claims that the alleged toxic substance Sturgess came into contact with was the same as in Salisbury.
“I think Charlie would remember that. I do believe it was sealed. I think he stumbled on it. I believe he had only just found it. If Charlie had found it in a bin in March he would have given it to Dawn straight away”, Caroline Sturgess said.
Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found unconscious in Salisbury on 4 March last year after allegedly being exposed to what the UK authorities later claimed was the Novichok nerve agent. London accused Moscow of orchestrating the purported attack, while failing to present any proof.
Four months later, the UK police reported a "serious incident" in the city of Amesbury, in which Sturgess and Rowley were believed to have handled an item allegedly contaminated by the same military-grade nerve agent that was purportedly used against the Skripals.
UK Home Secretary Sajid Javid accused Russia of using Britain as a "dumping ground" for poison, while Moscow has strongly denied any involvement in both the Salisbury and Amesbury incidents, stressing that no evidence had been presented to corroborate the claims.
In addition, the Russian Embassy in the UK pointed out that a hurried cremation of Dawn Sturgess confirmed that the British government was continuing to destroy evidence related to the Skripal case.