US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Wednesday that the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny was likely to have been ordered by senior Moscow officials.
“I believe that everyone in the world sees this type of event for what it is,” Pompeo said in an interview with influential conservative Ben Shapiro.
“And when they see an effort to poison a dissident, and recognize that there is a high probability that this has come from senior Russian officials, I believe that this is not good for the Russian people,” he continued.
Navalny, President Vladimir Putin’s biggest critic in Russia, became seriously ill when he boarded a flight in Siberia last month.
He was then transferred by plane to a hospital in Germany, where doctors diagnosed him as having been poisoned.
Pompeo reiterated that the United States and its European allies wanted Russia to “detain those responsible for this act” and revealed that Washington will try to identify the attackers.
“It is something we will see, evaluate and do our part to reduce the risk that things like this will happen again,” concluded the head of American diplomacy.
Pompeo’s statements come despite President Donald Trump’s comments last week, when he said he had no evidence that Navalny had been poisoned.
Trump has been trying to tighten relations with Putin, but his administration has imposed sanctions on Moscow due to the conflict with Ukraine.
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