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Rob Slane

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The Skripal Case: 20 New Questions That Journalists Might Like to Start Asking

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While the world’s attention has been largely focused on Syria for the past couple of weeks, we must not forget the Skripal case. The reason for this is that the two events appear to be inextricably linked, either because they show that the Russian and Syrian Governments are willing and able to use chemical weapons for their own ends, or because they show that the Governments of the United States, United Kingdom and France in particular are willing to use false accusations for their own ends.

Russia and Syria have been in the dock and apparently found guilty, but as ever the burden of proof lies with those making the accusations to show the certain evidence they have to back up their claims. However, the only thing that can be said with absolute certainty, regardless of which of these versions is correct, is that those who have made the accusations have not shown anything like the evidence needed to substantiate their claims.

Indeed, the biggest connection between the two events is not the “Who Dunnit” aspect, but rather the fact that guilt has been assigned and reprisals taken prior to the results of the investigations, and therefore before facts could be established with any certainty. Legally, morally and logically this is obvious nonsense, and it is a testament to the decline of educational standards in the West, and the triumph of emotional arguments over ones which appeal to facts and logic, that there are many who appear simply unable to grasp these very basic concepts.
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The Three Most Important Aspects of the Skripal Case so Far … and Where They Might be Pointing

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I have now asked a total of 50 questions around the Skripal case, which you can find here and here. Having gone back through these questions, as far as I can see only three have been answered by the release of public information or events that have transpired. These are:

Are they (Sergei and Yulia Skripal) still alive?

If so, what is their current condition and what symptoms are they displaying?

Can the government confirm that its scientists at Porton Down have established that the substance that poisoned the Skripals and D.S. Bailey was actually produced or manufacturedin Russia?

On the first two points we are now told that Yulia Skripal’s condition has significantly improved to the point where she is said to be recovering well and talking. However, although this provides something of an answer to these questions, it also raises a number of others. Is she finally being allowed consular access? Is she being allowed to speak to her fiancé, her grandmother, or her cousin by telephone? Most importantly, how does her recovery comport with the claim that she was poisoned with a “military-grade nerve agent” with a toxicity around 5-8 times that of VX nerve agent?
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