Russian spy attack: Johnson welcomes allies’ support

Foreign secretary’s remarks precede Trump sacking of Tillerson, who had criticised Moscow

The UK has been encouraged by the “strength of support” from allies to take action against Russia after the nerve agent attack on a former spy and his daughter, Boris Johnson said just hours before the US secretary of state, Rex Tillerson, was sacked by Donald Trump.

Tillerson, who spoke to the foreign secretary on Monday afternoon, had told reporters the attack on Sergei and Yulia Skripal “clearly came from Russia” and would have consequences.

His remarks went further than those of Theresa May, who told the House of Commons on Monday it was “highly likely” Russia was behind the attack. The White House press secretary, Sarah Huckabee Sanders, had stopped short of pointing the finger at Russia.

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Russian spy attack: focus falls on Salisbury cemetery

Hundreds of troops arrive on streets and experts in hazmat suits work near grave of Sergei Skripal’s wife

Almost 200 members of the armed forces arrived on the streets of Salisbury on Friday to support police investigating the nerve agent attack on a Russian former spy and his daughter, as attention focused on the cemetery where the remains of Sergei Skripal’s wife and and son lie.

In extraordinary scenes at the city’s London Road cemetery that indicated the investigation was gathering pace, experts in full hazmat suits helped set up tents over the grave of Liudmila Skripal and the memorial of Alexander Skripal, who both died in recent years.

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