NEWS
10/04/2018 08:43 BST | Updated 10/04/2018 16:40 BST

Yulia Skripal Discharged From Hospital A Month After Salisbury Poisoning

Her father Sergei should be able to leave 'in due course'.

Yulia Skripal has been discharged from hospital a month after after being poisoned in Salisbury alongside her father, a former Russian double agent.

The pair were hospitalised in a grave condition on March 4 when they were poisoned using a Soviet-developed nerve agent, known as Novichok. 

Dr Christine Blanshard, medical director at Salisbury District Hospital, told reporters at a press conference: “We have now discharged Yulia... She has asked for privacy from the media and I want to reiterate her request.

“This is not the end of her treatment but marks a significant milestone.”

Blanshard added that Sergei Skripal, 66, was “recovering more slowly” than his daughter but would be able to leave hospital in due course. 

Yulia Skripal/Russian Embassy
Yulia Skripal 

 

The medical director would not describe the details of the Skripals’ treatment, but said of nerve agent: “They attack particular enzymes in the body, which then stop the nerves from functioning.

“This leads to symptoms such as sickness and hallucinations. Our job is to stabilise them, ensuring they can breathe and blood can continue to circulate.

“We then needed to use a variety of different drugs to support the patients until they could create more enzymes to replace those affected by the poisoning.” 

The BBC reported Yulia had been taken “to a secure location” after leaving hospital on Monday.

Yulia’s cousin, Viktoria Skripal, who was denied a visa to enter Britain and visit her, said she believed Yulia would seek asylum in the UK.

She told Sky News: “I think Britain will insist that she claims asylum... I’ve tried lots of numbers for her but have had no response.

“How should I feel? I’m feeling pleased that she’s well enough to be released from hospital.

“So far my feelings are unclear because I have not seen her and nobody has seen her, we’ve just had information.”

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Yulia and Sergei Skripal

Dr Blanchard added decontamination techniques were used to remove remaining toxins, adding: “Both patients have responded exceptionally well to the treatments we have given them.” 

As the news was announced, the Russian Embassy in London said: “We congratulate Yulia on her recovery. Yet we need urgent proof that what is being done to her is done on her own free will.”

It also condemned reports she was now in a “secure location”

They said the news causes “concern as they mean that British authorities are continuing their policy of isolating her from the public, concealing important evidence and blocking an impartial and independent investigation.

“We are convinced that details of the incident that Yulia could share would become a valuable contribution to the progress of the investigation.

“Meanwhile, British authorities continue to refuse to provide any independently verifiable information about Yulia’s health and wishes.”

Asked about the Russian embassy comments regarding Skripal, Jeremy Corbyn said: “Let’s just be happy that she’s been released from hospital. Happy that she’s recovering.

“Her future has got to be her decision not anybody else’s. And she must make that decision herself, where she wants to live. Where she thinks she’ll be safe and secure.”

The Labour leader said the Russian comments were “a very strange message to put out indeed”.

He added: “The issue has to be finding out who did it. Finding out who provided it. And finding out who manufactured this terrible weapon that was used against her.”

Yulia Skripal, 33, issued a statement through Scotland Yard last week stating that her “strength is growing daily”.

The statement added that Sergei was “responding well to treatment, improving rapidly and no longer in a critical condition”. 

This week, Theresa May said it was “clear” Russia was behind the poisoning.

Moscow has denied any involvement in the incident which has plunged its relations with the West to a post-Cold War low.

“The UK’s case for holding Russia responsible for the attempted murder of Sergei and Yulia Skripal is clear,” May said.

“No other country has a combination of the capability, the intent and the motive to carry out such an act.”