Russia on Sunday accused Germany of stalling the investigation into the suspected poisoning of Russian opposition politician Alexeï Navalny.
“Berlin is stalling the process of investigation for which it is calling. On purpose?” Russian Foreign Ministry spokesperson Maria Zakharova wrote on Facebook.
Her remarks came just days after German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas threatened Russia with European sanctions if it failed to provide an explanation on the Navalny matter.
“So far we’re not certain that Germany is not playing a double game,” Zakharova said, accusing Berlin of delaying its response to requests from the Russian judicial authorities.
“Where is the ‘urgency’ you’re insisting on?” she challenged Maas.
A well-known critic of the Kremlin, Alexeï Navalny fell ill on 20 August while on a flight from the Siberian town of Tomsk to Moscow. The plane made an emergency and Navalny was hospitalised. Two days later, he was airlifted to Berlin, where he is still undergoing treatment in a hospital.
According to Maas there was “unequivocal evidence” that he was poisoned with Novitchok, a banned nerve agent developed for military use during the Soviet era.
Germany and other Western countries have repeatedly urged Moscow to clarify the matter, but Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said this week that he took the accusations with a good measure of scepticism and called on Berlin to come up with proof.
The Brussels Times