BERLIN (AP) – Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was poisoned with the Soviet-era nerve agent Novichok, officials in Germany announced Wednesday.
Citing new lab test results, German government spokesman Steffen Siebert confirmed that “Alexei Navalny was the victim of an attack with a chemical nerve agent in Russia” — which he called “dismaying.”
“The federal government condemns this attack in the strongest possible terms,” Seibert added. “We hope for a full recovery of Alexei Navalny.”
Navalny, a politician and fierce critic of President Vladimir Putin, fell ill during a flight to Moscow from Siberia on Aug 20. He was taken to a hospital in the Siberian city of Omsk, and two days later he was transferred to a hospital in the German capital Berlin.
Novichok is the same nerve agent that targeted former Russian spy Sergei Skripal in 2018 in the English cathedral city of Salisbury.
According to The Associated Press, Germany demanded a response from the Russian government.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the state Tass news agency that, “such information hasn’t been relayed to us.”