The United States announced Wednesday its intention to impose new economic sanctions on Russia, after determining that Moscow was behind the attack on Novitchok's agent in the United Kingdom.
After the poisoning in early March in Salisbury of the former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, "the United States determined on August 6 (…) that the Russian government had used chemical weapons or in violation of international law, "State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said in a statement.
In accordance with the US Chemical Weapons Act, this determination results in the imposition of economic sanctions that should come into effect at the end of August, she added, without specifying the nature of the sanctions.
The confirmed poisoning of the ex-double agent and his daughter by their exposure to Novitchok, a neurotoxic agent put developed by the Soviet Union at the end of the Cold War, had been attributed by London to Moscow, which had denied any involvement. The case triggered a serious diplomatic crisis between the Kremlin and Westerners and a wave of cross-expulsions of diplomats.
The United Kingdom has also asked the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to increase its assistance in the investigation of the death of a Briton allegedly exposed to Constable Novitchok, said Tuesday the organization, which is headquartered in The Hague, the Netherlands.
OPCW dispatched a team in July at the request of London to "independently determine the nature" of the substance that caused the death of that person in Amesbury, southern England.