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UK's top anti-terrorism police investigate alleged poisoning of Russian defector

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UK's top anti-terrorism police investigate alleged poisoning of Russian defector

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Doctors say Alexander Litvinenko has been moved to intensive care in hospital and only has a 50/50 chance of surviving after ingesting the deadly chemical Thallium. Scotland Yard says it is interviewing potential witnesses, studying the victim’s movements before he became ill and examining CCTV footage. Shortly before his poisoning, Alexander Litvinenko spoke at a conference at the frontline media club in London, discussing the death of an investigative journalist, Anna Politkovskaya, in Russia.

He said: “It is Russian President Mr Putin who has killed her. After her book, “Putin’s Russia” was published, she received a number of threats direct from the Kremlin,” he added.

But a Kremlin spokesman rejected the allegations made at the conference. He also said suggestions the Russian government was involved in Litvinenko’s poisoning were “pure nonsense”. Anna Politkovskaya was fiercely critical of Russian policy in Chechnya.

She was shot dead at her Moscow apartment building last month. Alexander Litvinenko is believed to have fallen ill after dining with a contact who claimed to have details about Politkovskaya’s murder.