Printed on Sat Oct 01 2022 7:47:07 AM

Allegations of poisoning at Ukraine-Russia meeting

International Desk
poisoning Ukraine-Russia meeting
Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich and Ukrainian peace negotiators suffered symptoms of suspected poisoning earlier this month after a meeting in Kyiv, the Wall Street Journal and the investigative outlet Bellingcat reported on Monday, citing people familiar with the matter.

Russian oligarch and at least two senior Ukrainian diplomatic officials were allegedly poisoned during peace talks earlier this month, according to a new report published Monday.

Roman Abramovich, the close associate of Vladimir Putin, and the Ukrainian negotiators developed “red eyes, constant and painful tearing, and peeling skin on their faces and hands” after a meeting in Kyiv, the Wall Street Journal reported Monday, citing “people familiar with the matter.”

Abramovich, who is reportedly assisting as a middle man between Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy and Russian president Putin, and the other negotiators, including Ukrainian lawmaker Rustem Umerov, survived the apparent attack and have improved.

The alleged poisoning occurred during negotiations on March 3 and 4, according to Bellingcat, an open-source investigative news outlet which confirmed the Journal report.

Three negotiators, including Abramovich and Umerov, had met that afternoon and retreated to an apartment in Kyiv later that night when their symptoms appeared. They had consumed “only chocolate and water in the hours before” they became sick, Bellingcat noted.

Examination the next day concluded the negotiators had been victims of a likely chemical attack and that their symptoms were “most consistent with variants of porphyrin, organophosphates, or bicyclic substances."

Western experts said it wasn't clear if the alleged attack was chemical, biological, or electromagnetic radiation, according to the Journal.
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