Putin Calls Poisoned Ex-Spy ‘A Scumbag’ Who Betrayed His Country

MOSCOW, RUSSIA - OCTOBER 3, 2018: Russia's President Vladimir Putin addresses a plenary session titled "Sustainable Energy for a Changing World" as part of the 2018 Russian Energy Week international forum at the Mane... MOSCOW, RUSSIA - OCTOBER 3, 2018: Russia's President Vladimir Putin addresses a plenary session titled "Sustainable Energy for a Changing World" as part of the 2018 Russian Energy Week international forum at the Manege Central Exhibition Hall. Sergei Savostyanov/TASS (Photo by Sergei SavostyanovTASS via Getty Images) MORE LESS
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October 3, 2018 9:22 a.m.

MOSCOW (AP) — President Vladimir Putin has called Sergei Skripal, the ex-spy who was poisoned with a military grade nerve agent in Britain, a traitor and a “scumbag.”

It was the first time Putin directly condemned Skripal, who spent weeks hospitalized with his daughter after both were poisoned in the city of Salisbury in March. Britain put the blame squarely on Russia, but Moscow has denied any role in it.

Asked about sanctions on Russia triggered by the attack, Putin called the ex-spy “just a scumbag” who betrayed his country. He reiterated Russia’s claim that it has nothing to do with the poisoning.

He said Wednesday the former agent was of no interest to the Kremlin since he was tried in Russia and exchanged in a spy swap in 2010.

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