Russian Poisoning Suspects: We Were Just Tourists

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Speaking to RT editor-in-chief, Maragarita Simonyan both said they had been wrongly accused by the United Kingdom of attempted murder of the ex-Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter.

The men denied trying to kill Skripal and his daughter Yulia with the Soviet-designed Novichok nerve agent.

The pair, named as Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, told the RT channel they had travelled to Salisbury to visit the cathedral on the recommendation of friends.

"Salisbury?" their interviewer asked.

Police in Wiltshire cordoned off a number of areas across the city and health officials said anyone exposed to the unknown substance had been decontaminated.

Many referred to the idea that the pair had travelled all the way to Salisbury just to see its cathedral.

"It's famous for its 123-meter spire", he said, adding that its clock is also notable.

British counterterrorism policing sources were understood to "stand by everything" they had said in naming two individuals from Russian Federation as being responsible for the March attack.

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Asked about apparent inconsistencies in the two men's story, 44-year-old Muscovite Ivan Raspopov joked: "You know, Russian tourists often become rather unusual in the West".

And British journalists have been mocking the story on Twitter, highlighting the improbability of the pair's itinerary and route if they were truly tourists.

Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, two Russians over the poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia, conducted a weird interview Thursday.

The RT interview appeared to show that Russian Federation was not planning to deny the veracity of video evidence released by Scotland Yard, but to argue it had been misinterpreted.

"Crucially, at least one man's passport files contain various "top-secret" markings, which, according to at least two sources consulted by Bellingcat, are typically reserved for members of secret services or top state operatives", it added.

Britain said the two suspects were Russian military intelligence (GRU) officers nearly certainly acting on orders from high up in the Russian state. But the Petrov/Borishov statements are not credible and don't match the widely accepted intelligence we have on these individuals'.

When pressed to describe their work in general terms, he said, "To cut a long story short, we're in the fitness industry".

"One goes, the other waits", Boshirov said. From a credibility point of view, the British government must stick to that position, McCauley asserted.

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A police officer who visited the home of the Skripals shortly after the attack, Nick Bailey, was also left critically ill from exposure to the substance. Police believe the perfume bottle had been specially adapted to carry the poison.

The two men say that they can't leave their homes in Russian Federation any more out of fear that they'll be recognised on the street.

Whatever revelations may pop up, the United Kingdom will stick to its vague version of the Salisbury poisoning incident, analysts said on the heels of an exclusive RT interview with Britain's Skripal case suspects.

They say the pair arrived at Salisbury railway station at 11.48am. We don't know who actually poisoned the Skripals.

London believes that Putin personally sanctioned the attack.

Tests on the east London hotel room where the suspects had stayed showed contamination of Novichok. We planned a vacation in London, and went to Salisbury to see the cathedral, Old Sarum, and Stonehenge, but on March 3 there was heavy snowfall, so we couldn't get around town easily.

Salisbury welcomes tourists from around the world and is very much open for business.

An image from footage released by Scotland Yard police shows suspect Alexander Petrov.

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