International

Putin: Russia knows real identities of suspects in UK poisoning case

Russian President Vladimir Putin said Wednesday that the Kremlin knows the real identities of the two men accused of attempting to murder a former Russian spy and his daughter on British soil.

Putin added that the two men do not work for the military and that there is "nothing criminal" about them, calling them "civilians," The Associated Press reported.

"We know who these people are, we have found them," Putin said at a panel at an economic conference in Vladivostok, according to AP. "There is nothing special or criminal about it, I can assure you."

Putin's comments come after Britain last week charged two alleged agents of Russia's military intelligence agency, GRU, in absentia of the murder attempt, which was carried out with a nerve agent.

Britain has blamed the Russian government of being involved in the attacks, though Moscow has strongly denied it.  

The poisoning left former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia Skripal hospitalized for weeks, as well as sickening another resident and killing a fourth.

Putin called on the two men the UK believes were involved in the attack to come forward, according to AP.

"I would like to call on them so that they can hear us today: They should go to some media outlet. I hope they will come forward and tell about themselves," Putin said.

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