Generic selectors
Exact matches only
Search in title
Search in content
Post Type Selectors

ANO, ČSSD for Security Council to discuss Novichok-related issues

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Table of Contents

Prague, May 6 (CTK) – The question of the Novichok poison’s presence in the Czech Republic, President Milos Zeman’s comments and secret services’ allegedly differing information on it should be discussed by the National Security Council, ANO and Social Democrat (CSSD) officials agreed on Sunday.

ANO deputy chairman Petr Vokral shared the opinion with his CSSD counterpart Martin Netolicky in a debate on Czech Television (CT).

Netolicky said the Security Council should meet in Zeman’s presence to clarify the issue.

On Thursday, Zeman said a small amount of the Novichok nerve poison was produced and tested in the Czech Republic last year.

Reacting to him, the Foreign Ministry and the Defence Ministry said such substances have been synthetised in the country for chemical defence purposes, but only microscopic amounts of them, and they definitely could not have leaked from the military research laboratories.

The very substance of the Novichok type (A234) that poisoned former Russian agent Sergei Skripal in early March has never been tested in the Czech Republic, the ministries said.

Vokral said on Sunday he feels embarrassed by the allegedly different assessment of the issue by the Czech military intelligence service (VZ) and the civilian counter-intelligence service (BIS), as referred to by Zeman.

“This may produce statements that shed rather unfavourable light on us,” Vokral said.

Netolicky said the developments play into the hands of Russian propaganda and make the Czech Republic ridiculous.

Zeman behaves unpredictably, said Mikulas Ferjencik, a Pirate deputy who also attended the debate on Sunday.

Vokral and Ferjencik suggested that the Chamber of Deputies deal with the issue.

Vokral said the public should be informed on what substances were tested in the country and how they were handled.

“We, the deputies, need to verify whether the president has made up the information [on Novichok in the country]. We need to find out the truth,” said Ferjencik.

Netolicky said the president, the prime minister and the ministers of defence and foreign affairs should regularly meet to discuss each other’s positions.

Citing its sources, Czech Television said Prague’s involvement in the Novichok affair may be connected with the Czech presidency of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW), which starts next week and is to deal with issues such as the suspected use of chemical weapons in Syria.

Ferjencik said this information is new to him. Vokral said he wants to believe that CT’s information is a mere coincidence. Netolicky would not speculate in this respect. He said he hopes that CT’s information would not be confirmed.

On Thursday, Zeman said, citing the VZ, that the nerve-paralysing substance A230, which he called Novichok, was produced in the Czech Republic. He also said the BIS came to the conclusion that A230 is not Novichok, but that he shares the VZ’s opinion.

Welcoming Zeman’s statements, Russia said they refute the British allegation that Moscow is behind the attack on Skripal.

most viewed

Subscribe Now