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Navalny’s Alleged Poisoning Constitutes Chemical Weapons Usage According to NATO And OPCW

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Navalny's Alleged Poisoning Constitutes Chemical Weapons Usage According to NATO And OPCW

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On September 3rd, the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) said that the alleged poisoning of Russian opposition figure Alexei Navalny with a toxic nerve agent constituted a use of banned chemical weapons.

“Any poisoning of an individual through the use of a nerve agent is considered a use of chemical weapons. Such an allegation is a matter of grave concern,” the OPCW said.

This is relevant, since he was allegedly poisoned with Novichok and it was banned by the OPCW in 2020.

Russia rejected accusations that Moscow was to blame for the poisoning of opposition leader Navalny.

Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said Moscow rejected any suggestion that Russia was responsible and warned other countries against jumping to hasty conclusions.

He said there was no reason to discuss measures against Moscow after German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Germany would consult its NATO allies about how to respond to the poisoning.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said that the member states were united in condemning the alleged attack.

He added there was “proof beyond doubt” that a Novichok nerve agent was used against Navalny.

But Russia has dismissed the diagnosis given by doctors in Germany, where he is being treated.

Speaking after an emergency NATO meeting, Stoltenberg said the Kremlin “must fully co-operate with the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons on an impartial international investigation”.

“We also call on Russia to provide complete disclosure of the Novichok programme to the OPCW,” he added.

Stoltenberg stressed that Navalny’s poisoning, which took place in Russia and not in a NATO member state, was different to that of the Skripals.

“We strongly believe that this is a blatant violation of international law [banning the use of any chemical weapons], so it requires an international response, but I will not now speculate about exactly what kind of international response,” he said.

But several senior Russian MPs have rejected NATO’s demands.

“Until experts have either confirmed or denied the use of chemical substances subject to the Chemical Weapons Convention, calls for involving the OPCW appear, in my view, politicized,” said Konstantin Kosachev of Russia’s Federation Council.

Since the incident, the EU has demanded a “transparent” investigation by the Russian government. The US National Security Council, too, has pledged to “work with allies and the international community to hold those in Russia accountable”.

It should be reminded that approximately 17 years ago, David Kelly died in the UK while going on a walk in Oxfordshire, where he lived.

Kelly was the distinguished government scientist who hunted down weapons of mass destruction of the kind used by the Blair government to justify the 2003 war with Iraq.

It turned out that Saddam Hussein’s government had none.

The BBC began reporting on the matter, and it was eventually revealed that it was Dr. David Kelly who was the hidden source behind the reports.

He died shortly thereafter. His death was investigated and it was concluded that it was suicide.

The inquiry found that Kelly died after cutting an artery, had taken an overdose of painkillers and had heart disease which left his arteries “significantly narrowed”. Thus, said experts, less blood loss may have killed the scientist than that needed to kill a healthy man.

This happened before he could officially give testimony on whether there really were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq.

This is quite similar to claims that Russia is using some sort of chemical weapons, and it also keeps failing to kill its alleged assassination targets. It is also showing how far protecting the narrative can go.

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