Russian Dmitri Kovtun, considered by the United Kingdom to be one of those involved in the 2006 poisoning of former Russian spy Alexander Litvinenko, died this Saturday from the coronavirus, reports the official TASS agency. “Dmitri Kovtun has died today in a Moscow hospital from the consequences of Covid-19,” says a source close to this businessman, according to the agency.
In September 2021, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that Litvinenko’s poisoning with polonium 210, in the United Kingdom, “is imputable to Russia.” The court, based in Strasbourg, thus supported the British investigation, which concluded that Russians Andrei Lugovoi and Dimitri Kovtun met three times in 2006 with Litvinenko and traces of polonium 210 were found on all of them.
The first was dinner in a restaurant, after which the former spy already had vomiting. The second was in a meeting between Litvinenko and Lugovoi, and in the third the three of them met to have tea in the bar of the hotel where they were staying.
Litvinenko, who had obtained asylum in the United Kingdom in 2001, died on November 23, 2006, from radiation poisoning “caused by very high concentrations of polonium 210 that had entered his body through a soluble compound,” according to the Strasbourg judgment based on the British investigation.
Lugovoi and Kovtun were charged with murder in the UK and have been requested to be extradited. The first was elected a deputy in the Russian Duma in 2007 and had parliamentary immunity. Delivery of the second was rejected by Moscow.
The British investigation established that both “acted under the orders” of the Russian intelligence services (FSB, former KGB).
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