Geneva – The UN rights chief called Tuesday on Moscow to conduct cooperate with a “thorough, transparent, independent and impartial investigation” into the alleged nerve agent on Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny.
Michelle Bachelet stressed the need to get to the bottom of the poisoning after German specialists said they had “unequivocal proof” that the weapons-grades nerve agent Novichok was used in the attack.
“It is incumbent on the Russian authorities to fully investigate who was responsible for this crime, a very serious crime that was committed on Russian soil,” Bachelet said in a statement.
Navalny, 44, an anti-corruption campaigner and one of President Vladimir Putin’s biggest critics, fell ill on a domestic flight last month and was treated in a Serbian hospital before being evacuated to Berlin.
The attack marked the latest in a long line of assassination attempts against Putin’s critics.
Bachelet stressed that “the number of cases of poisoning, or other forms of targeted assassination, of current or former Russian citizens, either within Russia itself or on foreign soil, over the past two decades is profoundly disturbing.”
“And the failure in many cases to hold perpetrators accountable and provide justice for the victims or their families, is also deeply regrettable and hard to explain or justify,”