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Sergei Skripal’s relatives fear he is dead as almost a month of silence goes by

Relatives of Sergei Skripal, the former Russian double agent who was allegedly attacked with a nerve agent in Salisbury last March, fear that he may be dead, his niece has told Russian news agency RIA.

Victoria Skripal said they haven’t heard from his daughter Yulia, who was also allegedly poisoned with Novichok in the Wiltshire city, since the end of July. On that occasion, she called to wish her grandmother happy birthday and had said that her father, 67-year-old Sergei, would be in touch as soon as he recovered from a tracheostomy.

When asked what made her relatives assume her uncle had died, Victoria told RIA: “Why do we think so? Because Yulia said her father would call in three days as he had great desire to…

“He loves his mother and at any convenient opportunity he would have called her,” the 46-year old said.

Victoria said she found it suspicious that there were no pictures of her uncle in the hospital ward, as she noted that there had been in the case of FSB Lieutenant Colonel Alexander Litvinenko, who was poisoned in London in 2006.

She also said the fact that neither her relatives nor the press had been allowed to see him raised eyebrows. “They didn’t let us in. I do not understand what’s so terrible if we see him?” Victoria said.

Sergei and 33-year-old Yulia, who have now both been discharged from hospital, were found slumped on a bench in Salisbury on March 4. They were allegedly attacked with the military-grade nerve agent Novichok.

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