The foreign ministry said in a statement that the involvement of Russian authorities was the only plausible explanation.
The U.S. State Department has for the first time directly accused the FSB of poisoning Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, CNN reported.
The State Department released its statement to the network in response to its request, days after reports emerged of the first direct evidence of the agency’s involvement in the poisoning.
“The U.S. believes Russian FSB officers used the nerve agent Novichok to poison Navalny. There are no other plausible explanations for the poisoning of Navalny other than the involvement and responsibility of the Russian government,” said a State Department spokesman. – Of course, President Putin and the Russian government would like us to believe otherwise.
The State Department spokesman added that Russia’s inability to answer questions about Navalny’s poisoning speaks volumes.
“Russia has put forward a variety of different, often contradictory conspiracy theories,” said the Foreign Ministry spokesman. – Let’s be clear: Such conspiracy theories are nothing more than an opportunity to divert attention from the serious questions the Russian government has been asked and has yet to answer.”
A CNN investigation, conducted in cooperation with the website Bellingcat, revealed that a group of 6-10 FSB agents specializing in poisoning agents had followed Navalny for more than three years before he was poisoned in August with a deadly nerve agent.
This report was followed by an admission by the Russian agent assigned to follow Navalny that they had applied the nerve agent to his underwear.
The statement, which was made not on behalf of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo but on behalf of an unnamed State Department official, said that the U.S. supports the conclusions of the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) investigation.
“The U.S. has full confidence in the findings of the OPCW, which confirmed previous findings by German, French, and Swedish laboratories that Navalny was exposed to… Novichok nerve agent,” said a State Department spokesman.