The two Russians accused by the UK’s law enforcement agencies in an attempt to kill the former double agent Sergey Skripal and his daughter in the British city of Salisbury, secretly visited the Czech Republic in 2014. This fact has been established by Radiožurnál publishing and radio program. At that time, Skripal was also on Czech territory, and according to the journalists’ sources, was helping the Czech secret services to expose Russian spies. The said pair, in turn, was keeping an eye on him.
“It seems that Russians had a special assignment unit, and they were spying on Skripal long before attempting to kill him,” says Radiožurnál’s source in the special services.
Sergei Skripal arrived in Czech Republic in the second half of October 2014, that is, according to the source, shortly after arriving in the country of the people who, according to the British investigation, almost four years later committed an attempt on the lives of both Skripal and his daughter Julia in Salisbury.
Alexander Mishkin, who, as identified by the international research group Bellingcat, worked as a doctor of the Russian military intelligence GRU, was in the city of Ostrava between October 13 and October 16, after which he went to Prague. Radiožurnál writes that he arrived in Czech Republic using fake documents under the name Alexander Petrov, the same name as he used in the UK.
Anatoly Chepiga, who is a GRU colonel, according to the information revealed by the journalists, visited Prague on October 11, 2014, according to Radiožurnál. He used the name “Ruslan Boshirov”, just like he did later for the Salisbury operation. “Their visit later came in focus of both the Czech intelligence and the National Center for Organized Crime (NCOZ). Since the investigation is taking place across Europe, nobody wants to comment on the findings,” Radiožurnál adds.
The two men who claim that their names are Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov are suspected of using the Novichok neuroparalytic agent for poisoning the Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter. Both of them have survived, however, the poison later killed a woman who accidentally came into contact with it and caused damage to her partner’s health.
The accused Russians in their defense claim that they visited Salisbury as tourists to admire the local cathedral. They are wanted on a European arrest warrant. The British prosecutor’s office believes there exists sufficient evidence to convict them. Russia denies any responsibility for the poisoning of four people, including one fatal.
Read more about the topic: Busted: Ruslan Boshirov’s and Alexander Petrov’s cover story turns out to be fake (interview)
Source: Czech television website Author: Jak Translated by: Svatoslav Ščyhol
Translated from Ukrainian to English by: Evgeniy Kalashnik, edited by Max Alginin