"I would like to emphasise, the Rowley brothers did not accuse Russia of any wrongdoing. One can see from the photographs and videos taken by the journalists present that the atmosphere of the meeting evidenced the contrary," the ambassador said.
Yakovenko added that he met the two brothers in order to brief them on the steps taken by Russia to get access to UK intelligence concerning the attack as well as information on the well-being of the victims. Yakovenko added that he had handed over a report containing letters and notes sent by the Russian side to London to the Rowleys.
"We have responded to the request to meet because there have been so many speculations recently regarding Russia's involvement in the incidents in Salisbury and Amesbury. In this regard, we wanted to explain our position to Charles Rowley and his brother Matthew… We took this opportunity to give [the brothers] a copy of a report we compiled entitled 'Salisbury: Unanswered Questions,'" the ambassador noted.
Yakovenko also said that he welcomed future meetings with the Rowley brothers and that he was open to dialogue if they had any further questions following the examination of the above-mentioned report.
Charles' girlfriend, Dawn Sturgess, who had also come into contact with the substance, died as a result of the incident. Speculations alleging Russia's role in the Amesbury incident and the attack on Skripal in Salisbury have been repeatedly condemned by Moscow as evidence-free.
On March 4, 2018, Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found unconscious on a bench near a shopping centre in Salisbury. London claimed they were poisoned with a military-grade nerve agent and accused Moscow of staging the attack.
The Kremlin has repeatedly dismissed the claims about Russia's involvement in the attack and stressed that Moscow has been denied access both to the investigation into the incident and to the Russian nationals.