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NATO expresses concern at ‘1st offensive use of nerve agent’ on alliance territory

The UK on Wednesday briefed the North Atlantic Council on the use of a nerve agent in Salisbury on March 4. Allies “expressed deep concern at the first offensive use of a nerve agent on alliance territory since NATO’s foundation” and also expressed solidarity with the UK, NATO said. It offered support in the ongoing investigation, and “called on Russia to address the UK’s questions including providing full and complete disclosure of the Novichok program to the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.” The alliance added it has repeatedly condemned the use of chemical weapons in Syria and called on those responsible to be held to account. “NATO regards any use of chemical weapons as a threat to international peace and security,” according to the statement. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said on March 13 that Moscow has nothing to do with the poisoning case in the UK. On Wednesday, Industry and Trade Minister Denis Manturov said Russia has fully destroyed all chemical weapon stocks without any exception.