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National security and the death of Litvinenko
By Olga Brajnović Posted in Europe, Ideals, Justice, World and Politics on May 18, 2013 0 Comments
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Alexander Litvinenko at University College Hos...

The widow of former KGB spy Alexander Litvinenko has called for the upcoming inquest into his death to be abandoned and replaced with a public inquiry, after the coroner ruled the inquest could not take evidence on possible Russian state involvement, citing national security, according to the BBC.

Marina Litvinenko said it was the only way to find the truth about the death of her husband, who was poisoned with radioactive polonium in London in 2006.

Litvinenko, was a critic of Vladimir Putin, the Russian president, and died in London after drinking polonium-210, a radioactive isotope poured into his tea at a London hotel. In a deathbed statement, he accused Putin of ordering his murder, a claim Russia has denied.

Now it will be more difficult to know the truth if the evidence remain secret. The problem is that a public inquiry on the death of Litvinenko may stumble with the same rock: National security.

In this case, to renounce to investigate the “possible Russian state involvement” is equivalent to let the accusation by the victim pointing to president Putin unsolved, and the suspicion opened. And because it was an accusation made when he was dying, it’s really powerful.

It’s not a surprise that in this spy stories “National security” arises and stops investigations to reach the truth, but in this case I had some hopes because of the notoriety of the death of Litvinenko, the fact that the killing was so obvious, and in London with a radioactive substance that could put in risk more people. But it seems it will be another mysterious case for a long time or for ever. It would be hard to know the truth about the involvement of the Russians and why Litvinenko had to die.

All for national security, or maybe national interests, or diplomatic agreements that are important at this moment. Prime Minister Cameron was recently in Moscow talking with Putin, the prime suspect according to the victim. We don’t know if this case was in the agenda but it’s sure that the improvement of the relations between the two countries was, and the efforts to try to make Russia cooperate on the Syrian crisis according to the western point of view also.

Alexander Litvinenko BBC KGB Litvinenko London Moscow Russia Vladimir Putin


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