Guest column: Government must be decisive in wake of poison attack

Sir Kevin Barron MP
Sir Kevin Barron MP

On Wednesday, the Prime Minister gave an update on the poisoning incident in Salisbury and the steps the Government is taking to investigate and respond to it.

The Prime Minister said that it was now clear a military-grade nerve agent, of a type apparently developed by Russia, was used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia.

She stated that the Government and security services had concluded that it was therefore “highly likely” that Russia was responsible for the attack.

The Prime Minister announced that the Foreign Secretary had summoned the Russian ambassador to demand an explanation for how a Russian-produced nerve agent could have been deployed in a British town, putting the lives of innocent civilians at risk.

I pay tribute to how our public services responded to this incident, the police and security services, the NHS, the armed forces and the analysts at Porton Down.

I fully condemn this deeply alarming attack, which nobody on the streets of Britain should ever face.

The Government should take decisive and proportionate action in response to this incident.

I welcome the steps taken by the Prime Minister to expel 23 Russian diplomats who are believed to be acting as ’undeclared intelligence officers’.

I believe we must now look at further financial and economic sanctions.

This isn’t simply one action by Russia, I believe it is a pattern of actions by Russia and we must ensure that an incident like this never happens again.

n To contact Sir Kevin Barron, call his constituency office in Dinnington on 
01909 568611 or email 
kevin.barron.mp@parliament.uk