“The names published by the media, like their photographs, mean nothing to us,” foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said.
British police identified Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov as the men who tried to kill Russian former double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia with Novichok in March.
UK authorities said the names were likely to be aliases.
“We once again call on the British side to switch from public accusations and manipulating information to practical cooperation through law enforcement agencies,” Zakharova said in televised remarks.
Russia’s permanent representative at the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, Alexander Shulgin, called the UK statement a “provocation”.
“Right from the start we said that Russia has nothing to do with what happened in Salisbury,” Shulgin told Russian state television.
The UK’s Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) said it would not apply for their extradition but it added that it obtained a European arrest warrant for the two men.
The CPS said the pair faced charges of conspiracy to murder Skripal, and the attempted murder of him, his daughter and Nick Bailey, a policeman injured in the attack.
Skripal was a colonel in Russian military intelligence who was jailed for betraying agents to Britain’s MI6 security service. He moved to England in 2010 as part of a spy swap.
The nerve agent was believed to have been smeared on the front door of his house in the southwestern city of Salisbury in March.
London blamed the Russian state for the attack, but Moscow strongly denied any involvement.
The Skripals and Bailey both recovered, but in June, a British couple fell ill from the same type of nerve agent in the nearby town of Amesbury.
One of them, 44-year-old mother of three Dawn Sturgess, died in July. DM
Want to watch Richard Poplak’s audition for SA’s Got Talent?
Who doesn’t? Alas, it was removed by the host site for prolific swearing*... Now that we’ve got your attention, we thought we’d take the opportunity to talk to you about the small matter of book burning and freedom of speech.
Since its release, Pieter-Louis Myburgh’s book Gangster State, has sparked numerous fascist-like behavior from certain members of the public (and the State). There have been planned book burnings, disrupted launches and Ace Magashule has openly called him a liar. And just to say thanks, a R10m defamation suit has been lodged against the author.
Pieter-Louis Myburgh is our latest Scorpio Investigative journalist recruit and we’re not going to let him and his crucial book be silenced. When the Cape Town launch was postponed, Maverick Insider stepped in and relocated it to a secure location so that Pieter-Louis’ revelations could be heard by the public. If we’ve learnt one thing over the past ten years it is this: when anyone tries to infringe on our constitutional rights, we have to fight back. Every day, our journalists are uncovering more details and evidence of State Capture and its various reincarnations. The rot is deep and the threats, like this recent one to freedom of speech, are real. You can support the cause by becoming an Insider and help free the speech that can make a difference.
*No video of Richard Poplak auditioning for SA’s Got Talent actually exists. Unless it does and we don’t know about it please send it through.
The movie Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs is titled It’s Raining Falafel in Israel.