Following talks on Thursday, the leaders of 28 European nations agreed with the British assessment that it was “highly likely” that Russia was behind this month’s poisoning of former spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. The European Council “agrees with the United Kingdom government’s assessment that it is highly likely that the Russian Federation is responsible and that there is no plausible alternative explanation,” the member states said in a joint statement.
While the EU Council insisted that member states “will coordinate on the consequences to be drawn in the light of the answers provided by the Russian authorities,” the bloc made a decision to recall its ambassador from Moscow. The EU envoy “is being recalled for consultations to Brussels,” Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said, noting that the “measure”was not a “sanction,” and that the ambassador was not being withdrawn from his post in Moscow.
Theresa May arrived in Brussels on Thursday, armed to the teeth with anti-Russian rhetoric and loud warnings that Moscow remains a threat to Europe. Without presenting a single shred of evidence of the Kremlin’s involvement in the nerve agent attack in Salisbury, she led her colleagues to form an anti-Russian chorus at the summit.