Russia warns it might walk away from chemical weapons watchdog after being blamed for attacks

Members of the armed forces in protective suits remove an ambulance from the Salisbury ambulance station in Salisbury, Britain. Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter were attacked with a nerve agent on March, 4. Neil Hall/EPA

MOSCOW – Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has warned that Russia could walk away from the global chemical weapons watchdog after member nations voted to allow the group to assign blame for chemical attacks.

In an interview with Britain’s Channel 4 News, Lavrov denounced a vote this week empowering the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons to assign responsibility for chemical weapon use. Russia and 23 other countries voted against the move initiated by Britain.

READ MORE: Ex-spy’s daughter calls recovery from poisoning ‘slow and extremely painful’

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Lavrov says “if this is not repaired, I believe the days of the OPCW would be numbered, at least it would not be as a universal organization.”

Britain says Russia was responsible for the nerve-agent poisoning in England of an ex-Russian spy and his daughter, a claim Russia has denied. Both nations have expelled diplomats in the dispute.

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