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British woman poisoned with Novichok nerve agent dies

British woman poisoned with Novichok nerve agent dies

A woman who was exposed to the nerve agent Novichok in Wiltshire county in South West England died in hospital on Sunday, The Guardian reported.

Police are opening a murder investigation after Dawn Sturgess died from exposure to a Russian nerve agent eight days after touching it.

"This is shocking and tragic news", Neil Basu, of the UK's counterterrorism agency, said. She became ill alongside a man named locally as Charlie Rowley, 45.

Later, the Metropolitan Police alleged that the pair came into contact with the same strand of the Novichok nerve agent that had been used against former Russian military intelligence officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia who were purportedly poisoned this March.

Britain has openly accused Russian Federation of being responsible for poisoning the Skripals with Novichok, a family of advanced nerve agents developed by the Soviet Union in the 1970 and 1980s.

Russian Federation has repeatedly denied any involvement.

The Skripals were released from hospital but the investigation into the attack on them continues.

Sturgess initially collapsed at an address in Amesbury on June 30 and was taken to the hospital, police said.

'It's not looking good for Charlie either, ' Ms Sturgess's mother Caroline said.

Three other men who also travelled in the van have been tested and show no signs of having been exposed to Novichok, Mr Basu said.

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Mr Basu said investigators were "unable to say" yet whether the Novichok traces found on the hands Ms Sturgess and Mr Rowley were from the same batch of the Soviet-era nerve agent used on the Skripals but "this remains our main line of enquiry".

Glen told BBC radio the two may have handled a contaminated object due to their "habit of looking into bins" and police were trying to work out "how they came into contact with this nerve agent and when".

And he said he could not rule out the possibility of other people being poisoned.

"I simply can not offer any guarantees", Assistant Commissioner Neil Basu, the head of Britain's counter-terror police, which is leading the investigation, told reporters.

Police said Ms Sturgess' family had been notified and were receiving support.

According to CBS News, the container is likely a syringe or vial.

However, Peskov also said he was unaware of anybody linking Moscow with this month's poisoning of a couple in Amesbury, which comes four months after Sergei and Yulia Skripal were poisoned with the same substance in nearby Salisbury.

Mr Deputy Speaker, it is with profound sadness that I must inform the House that one of the patients - Dawn Sturgess - died last night at Salisbury District Hospital. "The investigation must be led by the evidence available and the facts alone".

Novichok, which works by causing a slowing of the heart and restriction of the airways, is one of the world's rarest nerve agents.