Russian Federation says will first inform United Kingdom on retaliation, then…

Moscow to Expel 23 UK Diplomats, Revokes Agreement on Opening Consulate Gen.

Russia's Foreign Ministry ordered the expulsion of 23 British diplomats from Russia on Saturday in response to Britain's decision to expel Russian envoys in connection with the Skripal case.

Russian Federation has come under growing pressure from Britain and its allies, after Prime Minister Theresa May said it was "highly likely" that Moscow was responsible for the attack.

Britain's ambassador to Russia, Laurie Bristow, was summoned to Russia's foreign ministry on Saturday and was handed Russia's response to the UK's sanctions.

Escalating a crisis in relations, Russian Federation said it was also shutting down the activities of the British Council, which fosters cultural links between the two countries, and Britain's consulate-general in St Petersburg.

Britain blames Russian Federation for the attack, which has left the Skripals in critical condition and a police officer seriously ill in a Salisbury hospital.

"The measures are more harsh, but the British deserved them".

And it said it had halted the activities of the British Council, Britain's worldwide organisation for cultural relations and educational opportunities.

This is not the first time the British Council, an organization that promotes cultural exchange, has been caught up in retaliations.

He said the reaction across the Government, Parliament and the wider country had been "hugely encouraging" but he hit out at Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn, who came under fire on Wednesday after failing to offer explicit support for the Prime Minister's approach in the House of Commons.

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The ministry also declared it was closing the British Consulate General in St. Petersburg and the British Council in Russian Federation, in a step beyond the measures taken by Britain.

Russia has opened its own criminal investigation into the attempted murder of Yulia, a Russian citizen, and also Nikolai Glushkov, a Russian exile Scotland Yard said died from "compression to the neck" at his home in New Malden, south-west London.

Theresa May has said Porton Down has found the nerve agent used was part of a group developed by Russian Federation.

She denied the existence of the nerve agent Novichok that Britain said was used against them.

Putin himself has yet to make a public comment on the incident aside from one remark to a BBC reporter earlier this week in which he said: "Sort things out from your side and then we will discuss this with you".

The Kremlin has warned that Russian Federation could take further measures, if Britain makes any more "unfriendly" moves toward Russian Federation.

The midnight deadline then passed without comment from Russia, prompting the United Kingdom expulsion of the Russian diplomats.

When asked by Sky News whether Russia had destroyed all its chemical weapons in line with the internationally recognised Chemical Weapons Convention, Russian diplomat, Alexander Shulgin said: "Absolutely". Putin's spokesman denounced the claim. Officials from the world's chemical weapons watchdog will arrive in Britain on Monday to investigate the samples used in the attack and the results should be known in about two weeks, Britain's foreign ministry said.

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