12:05 GMT24 October 2020
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    YAROSLAVL (Sputnik) - The niece of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal, who was poisoned in the United Kingdom on 4 March 2018, told Sputnik that her uncle had called her twice in the past two months and that she had shared audio recordings of both calls with the Russian Investigative Committee.

    "I gave the records to the Investigative Committee and talked with an investigator… There are only two records. One short record was made on April 4 and the second was made on 9 May. I personally spoke with him only in April", Viktoria Skripal said.

    She noted that her uncle called from different UK numbers each time.

    "On 9 May, he rang at 7 p.m. [16:00 GMT], I didn’t hear the call… There was a voice mail left on the phone", Viktoria added.

    Viktoria also stressed that she was confident that the person who called her was her uncle, Sergei Skripal.

    "At first I did not consider it necessary to talk about the calls [with the media]. Well, he called — and that's it, he learned about my health, yes, thank you. That is, he is worried about us. Now I decided to explain everything. Yulia called, everything is fine with her. Sergei Viktorovich [Skripal] called, everything is fine with him. That's all. That is, the topic is closed", Viktoria said.

    The statement comes after the Russian Moskovskiy Komsomolets newspaper published an audio recording of Sergey Skripal’s voice message to his niece on its website. According to the newspaper, he called Viktoria Skripal on 9 May, Victory Day, and left her a voice mail since she did not pick up the phone. According to the audio recording, Skripal wished his niece a happy Victory Day and all the best. He also asked about her and her husband's health after being attacked in early April in the Russian city of Yaroslavl. Skripal also gave assurances that he and his daughter, Yulia, who was also victim of the UK poisoning attack, were fine.

    READ MORE: Russian Embassy Files Note to UK Foreign Office Over New Article on Skripal Case

    On 4 March of last year, Sergei and Yulia Skripal were found unconscious on a bench near a shopping centre in the UK city of Salisbury. London claimed they were poisoned with the A234 military-grade nerve agent and accused Moscow of staging the attack, provoking a huge international scandal.

    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 the Skirpals.

    Although both Sergei and Yulia Skripal are said to have recovered from the attack, Russian diplomats working in the United Kingdom say that no one has personally seen them since last March, meaning that their fates remain unknown.


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