>> Russia is expelling 23 British diplomats, as ties continue to worsen after Sergei Skripal and his daughter were targeted with a nerve agent on UK soil. The move comes in retaliation for Britain's decision to kick out 23 Russians who Prime Minister Theresa May says were spies working under diplomatic cover.
Those now named by Moscow must leave within a week. After summoning the UK's ambassador, the Kremlin has also decided to close the British Council, a body aimed at promoting cultural ties.>> I just had a meeting in the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs. This crisis has risen as a result of an appalling act in the United Kingdom, the attempted murder of two people using a chemical weapon developed in Russia and not declared by Russia to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, as Russia was and is applied to do.
>> The British government has firmly pointed the finger of blame at Russian President Vladimir Putin. Moscow denies any involvement, but has refused to explain how former spy Skripal and his daughter Yulia could have been exposed to a chemical weapon in the UK the British authorities contend was developed in the former Soviet Union.
British police are reportedly working from the theory that the nerve agent was somehow stowed in Yulia's luggage when she came to visit her father from Russia. Moscow has now also opened their own investigation into the attack on Yulia, who is a Russian citizen. They've also opened a parallel inquiry into the death of this Russian businessman, Nikolai Glushkov who was found dead in his London home on Monday.
Britain's Scotland Yard has opened a murder investigation into Glushkov, a critic of Putin, who they say appears to have been killed by compression to the neck. Although they say they do not see a link to the attack on Sergei Skripal and his daughter.