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Full report: Skripal Poisoning Suspect Dr. Alexander Mishkin, Hero of Russia

October 9, 2018

By Bellingcat Investigation Team

Read The Insider Russian report on this same topic here.

In  a preceding report on the investigation into the two suspects in the Skripals poisoning case, Bellingcat and its reporting partner the Insider disclosed the identity of one of the two suspects. The person travelling under the alias of Ruslan Boshirov was identified as GRU’s Col. Anatoliy Chepiga, recipient of Russia’s highest state award.

Bellingcat can now report that it has conclusively identified the second suspect, who travelled to Salisbury under the alias Alexander Petrov. We already produced evidence that “Alexander Petrov” is not an authentic persona, but an undercover alias for an officer of a Russian security agency. In a later report, we established that “Petrov” was specifically working for Russia’s military intelligence, the GRU.

We have identified “Alexander Petrov” to be in fact Dr. Alexander Yevgeniyevich Mishkin, a trained military doctor in the employ of the GRU. Furthermore, multiple witnesses familiar with Alexander Mishkin and his family have confirmed to us that he, like Col. Chepiga, is a recipient of the Hero of Russia award, which is bestowed by a special decree by the Russian President.

While Alexander Mishkin’s true persona has an even smaller digital footprint than Anatoliy Chepiga’s, Bellingcat has been able to establish many key facts from his background.

Who is Alexander Mishkin?

Alexander Mishkin was born on 13 July, 1979 in the village of Loyga, in the Archangelsk District in Northern European Russia. Loyga, inhabited by just over a thousand residents, is so remote that it has no road access to the rest of Russia, and for most of the year is only reachable via a narrow-gauge railroad. Alexander Mishkin lived in his home village until at least 1995, until he was sixteen. For a large part of his school years, Mishkin lived with his grandmother, Loyga’s only medical practitioner at the time.

Photograph from Loyga, a village without paved roads, isolated from the rest of Russia most of the year

At some point between 1995 and 1999, Alexander Mishkin moved to St. Petersburg. We could not establish what led to the initial relocation, although some people familiar with his family reported that he enrolled at a military academy. We have established with certainty however that no later than 2001 he was a student at the “S. Kirov” Military Medical Academy, which is popularly referred to in Russian as Voyenmed. Mishkin studied at the Academy’s 4th Faculty, which trains military doctors for Russia’s naval armed forces.  He specialised in undersea and hypobaric medicine. Mishkin graduated the Academy in 2006 or 2007 with a medical degree and rank of senior lieutenant, which is the default rank granted to all military doctors in Russia.

It is not certain at what point — before, during or after his military medical studies — Mishkin was recruited to work for the GRU. However, no earlier than 2007 and no later than 2010 he relocated to Moscow and received an undercover identity, including a second national ID and travel passport, under the alias Alexander Petrov.

Unlike the case of Anatoliy Chepiga, “Petrov”’s cover identity retained most of the biographical characteristics of the authentic Mishkin – such as the exact birth date, first and patronymic name, and first names of his parents. The family name was changed to Petrov, and the birthplace was moved to Kotlas, town approximately 100 km from his actual place of birth (reaching Kotlas from Loyga by car, ironically enough, takes 10 hours as it requires a 350-km detour). Under his cover identity, Mishkin was registered at a Moscow address occupied by a different individual who is likely unrelated to him and unaware of his existence. The real Mishkin, under his authentic identity, lived with his wife and two children at a different address in Moscow.

Incomplete border crossing data obtained by Bellingcat shows that in the period 2010-2013 Mishkin travelled — under his undercover persona of Petrov — multiple times to Ukraine, and often crossed by car into and back from the self-declared Transnistrian Republic where he stayed for short periods of time.  His last trip to Ukraine was in mid-December 2013. Mishkin’s travel itinerary from 2016 and on was reported previously by us.

Until early September 2014, Mishkin’s registered home address in Moscow was Khoroshevskoye Shosse 76B, the address of the headquarters of the GRU. Bellingcat has confirmed that until approximately the same time, August 2014, Col. Chepiga was also registered as “residing” at this address. This address registration did not mean that the two physically lived at the GRU headquarters but that their actual place of residence was kept confidential.

Hero of Russia award: For activities in Ukraine?

In the latter part of 2014, President Putin bestowed Alexander Mishkin with the Hero of the Russian Federation Award.  People closely familiar with Mishkin’s family reported to us that they believe Russia’s highest award was given for Mishkin’s activities “either in Crimea or in relation to [former Ukrainian president] Yanukovich”

In our previous reporting on Chepiga, we identified that until 2014 he resided at an apartment complex shared by dozens of GRU-linked officers and owned by the Ministry of Defense. While we found no indication of Mishkin’s actual residence while registered at GRU headquarters address, it can be assumed he also used a GRU-issued corporate apartment. In the autumn of 2014, at the time both Mishkin and Chepiga received their Hero of Russia Awards, both moved to upscale apartments valued at between €350,000 and €500,000 at the exchange rates that existed then. Bellingcat believes that these apartments were in-kind remuneration that accompanied the highest state award.

Alexander Mishkin current military rank is unknown. However, based on the known rank as of graduation from the Military Medical Academy (Russian military doctors graduate with a rank of senior lieutenant), and the elapsed time (15 years), it can be posited that as the time of the Skripals’ poisoning incident he was either a Lt. Colonel or a full Colonel.

Identification method

The starting point for our research was a passport photograph of “Alexander Petrov,”as well as security camera photos and video footage from this person’s interview on RT.  In addition, we had the passport dossier of the undercover persona “Petrov”, which contained an earlier photo and other, possibly irrelevant or fake, biographical data. In addition, UK media quoted a police source stating that the first name of the suspect was indeed believed to be “Alexander”, while the family name was believed to be different than “Petrov”.

Similar to the identification of Col. Chepiga, Bellingcat initially exhausted all reverse-image search attempts with no match. This implied that “Petrov”, like Col. Chepiga, has no social media or other photographic presence on the internet, or that such past presence, if any, has been cleansed thoroughly.

The second line of attack was to search through photo-albums or group photos and videos of graduates of the Far-Eastern Military School attended by Col. Chepiga. This approach also yielded no results. Similarly, no matches were identified in group photos of the Spetsnaz military unit to which Chepiga was assigned after graduation. Then Bellingcat searched through names of all people registered at Chepiga’s corporate-residence address. After exploring all possible name and age matches, we concluded none of the residents could be “Alexander Petrov.”

Change of search algorithm

Finally, we decided to apply a different approach to the search. While in the case of Chepiga, all personal details had been altered for his cover persona, this was not necessarily always the case.  Other GRU undercover officers we had investigated, such as Eduard Shishmakov, had retained their first name, birthdate and place of birth, and had only the last name changed, in Shishmakov’s case to “Shirokov.” The research team hypothesized that this may have been the case with “Petrov” too, given the tip that the first name had been retained unchanged.

Looking for clues as to the geographical focus for the search, we noted that in the “cover” passport file, there was a reference to a previous passport, issued in St. Petersburg in 1999.

The address in St. Petersburg mentioned in the covert passport of “Petrov” that refers to a passport issued in 1999

Searching through dozens of previously leaked databases, we did not find such passport issue number, leading the team to conclude the number was fake. However, the reference to St. Petersburg was a possible clue, under the “minimum change” hypothesis.

Alexander from St. Petersburg

Focusing on St. Petersburg, we searched through various leaked databases of residents, vehicle owners and telephone subscribers, by using the following search criteria: first name and patronymic = “Alexander Yevgeniyevich” (as in the cover identity),  and birth date = “13 July, 1979” (also as in the cover identity).

This search resulted in only one exact match in St. Petersburg databases from 2003 and 2006: Alexander Yevgeniyevich Mishkin, born on 13 July, 1979. This name with the same address, Akademika Lebedeva street 12, apartment 30, are mentioned in an open source database as well.

Alexander Yevgeniyevich Mishkin, born on 13 July 1979, from a 2003 St. Petersburg database

Bellingcat then used the telephone number (which is no longer in service) listed in the database as search criteria, to find other St. Petersburg residents that were linked to it. At least eight residents were registered to have used this same phone number, in the 2003 and 2006 databases. This finding suggested that these living quarters may have been a communal apartment (komunalnaya kvartira), or living space shared by multiple unrelated residents. Communal apartments were wide-spread in the USSR, but as of 2002 would have primarily been used by students. Indeed, more than half of the people registered to this phone number, including Mishkin, were between ages of 18 and 24.

A total number of eight people registered on the same address with the same telephone number as Alexander Mishkin

A review of the map of St. Petersburg placed the address directly across the part of the campus buildings of the St. Petersburg Military Medical Academy, or Voyenmed.

Campus buildings of the St. Petersburg Military Medical Academy across the address of Mishkin

Another clue from the cover passport that supports the hypothesis that Alexander Mishkin is the true identity of Alexander Petrov, is the aforementioned reference to a previous passport issued in 1999. The reference mentions “20 отделение милиции Выборгского района город Санкт-Петербурга,” translated as the 20th police department of the Vyborg district of St. Petersburg, located at Ulitsa Smolyachkova nr.5, just 1.6 kilometers from the address where Mishkin was registered.

Using the open-source online database of residents of St. Petersburg, Bellingcat identified more than 30 persons who had inhabited different apartments in the house at “Akademika Lebedeva 12.” A search for these people’s online presence showed that many of them list VMEDA as their alma mater, and many others work in spheres linked to the medical profession.  From the 8 persons registered to the same communal apartment as Mishkin, two were identified, via social media, as VMEDA graduates.

No presence for “Alexander Yevgeniyevich Mishkin” with the birth date of 13.07.1979 was found on Russian or foreign social media sites.

At this point in the investigation, Bellingcat hypothesized that the Alexander Yevgeniyevich Mishkin who lived across the street from the VMEDA in 2002 was a student at the military medical academy. Additionally, the team hypothesized that this might indeed by the real person behind the persona Alexander Petrov, who shared the same birthdate, name and patronymic.

Linking St. Petersburg to Moscow

On the assumption that the real person behind “Alexander Petrov” lives and works in Moscow (as suggested by the Moscow registration of the cover passport file), Bellingcat then searched for presence of a person with the name Alexander Yevgenyevich Mishkin in Moscow. The first open-source result was from a Moscow online phone database.

The telephone number of Alexander Yevgenyevich Mishkin in Moscow

Using this phone number and name, we searched in various leaked Moscow databases and found a match in a car insurance database from 2013.

Mishkin’s telephone number in a 2013 car insurance database

However, at this point it was not unequivocal that this Moscow-based person having the same full name and driving a Volvo XC90 was the same person as the St. Petersburg namesake. To verify this, Bellingcat acquired the registration history of this vehicle from an official Russian database.  The car history showed that it had been imported, and initially registered in St. Petersburg in 2012, and on 11 September 2013 had been transferred to an individual residing in the Khoroshevsky District in Moscow.

The registration history of the Volvo XC90 shows the car was registered in 2013 to a person living in the Khoroshevsky District in Moscow

As the GRU headquarters is located at Khoroshevskoye Shosse 76B, in this same district, this finding increased the probability that Alexander Mishkin from St. Petersburg is indeed “Alexander Petrov.” However, the evidence was still inconclusive, primarily as there was no confirmation that “Khoroshevsky Region” Alexander Mishkin shares (a) same birth date as the St. Petersburg namesake and (b) if his address in Khoroshevsky Region is not a pure coincidence.

To eliminate these uncertainties, we obtained a more recent auto insurance database from 2014, available for purchase from a Russian website. A search for the registered owner of the Volvo XC90 eliminated any doubt that Alexander Mishkin is linked to the GRU, as the address listed for the owner was GRU’s headquarters, at Khoroshevskoye Shosse 76B.  Additionally, due the full overlap of birth date and name, we concluded that with high confidence that he is the same Alexander Mishkin who resided next to  Russia’s military academy in St. Petersburg in 2002.

Alexander Mishkin’s address in a 2014 car insurance database, mentioned as “Khoroshevskoye Shosse 76B,” the address of the GRU headquarters

At this point in the investigation, Bellingcat and its investigative partner, The Insider, shared the conviction that Alexander Mishkin was in fact the person behind the alias “Petrov,” as all evidence was internally consistent, and also consistent with data from the previous case study of Shishmakov/Shirokov. The team also had relatively high confidence that Alexander Mishkin had studied at, and possibly graduated, the St. Petersburg Military Medical Academy, VMEDA, or Voyenmed.

Do not divulge

Via Russian social networks, Bellingcat mass-contacted hundreds of VMEDA graduates from the 2001-2007 class range. We did not inform the persons contacted about the context of the query, nor did we mention Petrov. Many of the contacted persons responded by saying they are not familiar with an Alexander Mishkin as having been in their class. Most others did not respond to our queries.

One person, who requested complete anonymity, confirmed to Bellingcat that Alexander Mishkin indeed graduated the academy, having been in a different class. They also said that they had recognized Mishkin as “Alexander Petrov” from the RT interview. This same person informed us that many of the graduates from Mishkin’s class and department had been contacted by Russian security services over the last few weeks, and instructed not to divulge Mishkin’s identity to anyone.

A photo worth a thousand words

Having established Petrov’s true identity in late September, we focused all efforts on obtaining a photograph of Alexander Mishkin. As reported by Russian media, following Bellingcat’s initial reports on the Skripal suspects, the Russian domestic security agency FSB clamped down on sources that they perceived might be leaking data from Russia’s passport dossier databases. As a result, requesting any source to provide the investigating team with access to Mishkin’s passport file was not an option, as it would place this source in danger.

Instead, we were able to obtain a copy of Alexander Mishkin’s scanned passport pages, from a source with access to a scanned copy of the passport. The source requested complete anonymity due to safety concerns, and thus Bellingcat cannot share the position or history the source has that has enabled them to have access to this document. However, we have validated the data visible in the passport in at least three other leaked databases that match the passport number, date of issue, name and issuing authority.  The photo on the passport scan does not appear in any other open sources, further minimizing the risk of а forged document. We have also confirmed the source’s profession and that his or her position (which is not linked to the government) provides access to this document.

A scan of Alexander Mihskin’s 2001 passport

The source also provided Bellingcat with a second document in the name of Alexander Mishkin containing a (different) photograph of an individual bearing a strong facial resemblance of “Petrov.”

Bellingcat requested a forensic facial similarity analysis between the passport photo from Mishkin’s passport (dated 2001) and “Petrov”’s international passport (dated 2006), from Prof. Ugail, professor of visual computing at the University of Bradford and an expert in simulated age progression. Prof. Ugail confirmed unequivocally that the two photographs belong to the same person, accounting for the 15-year difference between the two.

Mishkin’s passport photo of 2001 versus Petrov’s passport photo; various face recognition methods show a high percentage of probability of a match

On the road to Loyga, the village with no roads

For final validation of our amassed findings, Bellingcat’s Russian investigative partner, The Insider, sent a reporter to the village of Loyga.  The reporter was able to meet and talk to many residents, who all recognized “Alexander Petrov”, the person shown on photographs released by the British police and seen in the RT interview, as “our local boy” Alexander Mishkin. One person told our reporter that Alexander Mishkin had been her son’s play friend.

In addition, at least five different residents told our reporter that Alexander Mishkin, who they knew worked in Murmansk or in Moscow “as a military doctor”, had received the Hero of Russia award several years ago. One source close to Mishkin’s grandmother (who is now in her 90s, and as a former doctor is still revered in the village) told us that the reason for the award is top secret, but that the understanding in the village was that it was “for Crimea or [for former Ukrainian president Viktor] Yanukovych,” the implication being that the award had either something to do with the Crimean annexation or with helping Yanokovych flee Ukraine.

The same source told us that Alexander Mishkin’s grandmother possesses a photograph on which President Putin is shown bestowing the Gold Star medal (which goes with the award) to Alexander, and shaking his hand. The source said the grandmother treasures this photo and does not show it to everyone, and never lets anyone else hold it. Our reporter was not able to talk directly to Petrov’s grandmother or see the photograph.

A Doctor and a Hero

Bellingcat could not find any publicly accessible document confirming that Alexander Mishkin received the Hero of Russia award. However, this is not unusual, as only a part of the awards are made public, while recipients who earn the recognition through services that are subject to state secrecy are not announced. In the Col. Chepiga case, we were only able to discover his award due to public statements by officers of his military school, and the gold-emblazoned name on the “Gold Star” wall of a school-ground monument. No such public honors were identified in open sources for Dr. Mishkin.

However, at least one document discovered by Bellingcat corroborates the statements by Alexander Mishkin’s proud townspeople. In September 2014, at about the same time that Mishkin would have received his award, per the Loyga residents, Mishkin moved to a new apartment in а freshly build skyscraper in Moscow. The two-bedroom apartment, which was registered in the name of his wife and two daughters, had a tax value of approximately €350,000, significantly above the price range tenable for a Russian military officer. More tellingly, according to an extract from Russia’s central real estate registry, ownership of the apartment was obtained by the new owners based on a “Contract of Transfer.” A Contract a Transfer is not a standard form of real estate acquisition; a more standard reference would be a “Sale and Purchase Contract.”

At approximately the same time, Col. Anatoliy Chepiga also moved from an apartment in a corporate “dormitory” building to an upscale apartment not far from Mishkin’s. Chepiga’s apartment was larger and more expensive: at 100 sq. m, its tax value was reported at approx. half a million euro at the then exchange rate. This 12th floor apartment was also passed on to the four members of the Chepiga family on the basis of a “Contract of Transfer of Ownership”, although in this document also the term “Privatization” was added.

The most plausible explanation for these two contemporaneous “transfers”, none of which was associated with a mortgage or a traditional sale-purchase contract, is that they were granted to Chepiga and Mishkin by the Russian state as an in-kind bonus alongside the Hero of Russia award. This would be consistent with information reported to the BBC and other media by residents of Chepiga’s home village who spoke of a Moscow apartment being given to Anatoliy Chepiga as a present when he received the Hero of Russia Award.

Relevance of new findings

The findings of this investigation by Bellingcat add possibly material context to the mission of the two GRU officers to Salisbury. The inclusion of a trained military doctor on the team implies that the purpose of the mission has been different than information gathering or other routine espionage activities. Bellingcat contacted various sources with knowledge of practices of Russian military intelligence who provided a range of opinions on what the relevance of the presence of a doctor in a foreign-operations team means. While some stated that GRU was known to form multi-functional and multi-skilled teams as part of operational “best practices”, others suggested that a doctor would be a mandatory addition to a team tasked with poisoning a target — either for ensuring effective application of the chemical, or to protect team members from accidental self-poisoning.

The new findings also require a renewed analysis of the travel itinerary of Mishkin across Western Europe in the period 2016-2018, previously disclosed by Bellingcat.

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  1. Jeroen

    Now that both the car Mercedes GLS 350D with registration T 705 TT 99 and one of the possible home adresses, Ulitsa Perekopskaya 34-4 Moskva, of those GRU suspects, who are brought in connection with possible smearing Novichok on the car door of the red British registered BMW HD09 WAO, are in the clear open, it might be in interesting to draw attention on another interesting Russian car.

    Moskwa registered (FSB?) white Zhiguli with falsified Ryazan number K 602 VK “62” which was used by two FSB man and one FSB woman to transport 3 sacks of “Sugar” i.e. RDX Hexogen and an detonator to the Ryazan appartement, and where caught/arrested 24 hours later by the local authorities.

    Who were these three Moskovian FSB operators involved in the local Ryazan “Joint Police/FSB exercise Whirlwind”?

    Do they live freely next to “Borishov” and “Petrov” these days?
    Also in Russian

  2. Vitalis

    i’m a Nigerian, and a journalist too,i would love to work with you, if given the opportunity, a trilled by your work

  3. Jeroen

    Who were the 12 GRU agents which according the senior lieutenant of GRU Alexey Viktorovich Galkin were involved in the Buynaksk appartement bombing of 4 September 1999?

  4. Andrew H

    In order to put to bed some conspiracy theories can you include information of approximately when you acquired some of the databases used for evidence. (it is not clear if all information was acquired recently for this specific investigation or whether it is stuff you have acquired over many years). For example, does Mishkin’s birth date occur in any database acquired by Bellingcat prior to 2018? The question is to rule out any possibility you are being played / fed data say by GRU or other parties.

    • Mr Bleu

      They answered this exact question when they released a public statement / presser. Here is the video. It’s on the 3:42 mark.

      Try to listen carefully as the loon called Graham Philips is shouting and blocking the view throughout the video.

  5. francesca

    So, it was in a form that was safe to handle without a HAZMAT suit?
    So you’re now telling me the UK has spent millions decontaminating Salisbury, all kitted out with HAZMAT suits, when all they needed was gloves(didn’t save Bailey)and baby wipes?
    Ever considered a career as a contortionist?

    • The GRU's Incompetent

      Ever considered a career as a contortionist, no funnily enough I haven’t, but you are clearly very well employed as a village idiot, does it pay well? The assassins obviously knew what they were dealing with, on account of the fact that someone made the nerve agent for them and presumably gave them instructions on how to apply it and avoid killing themselves. Very likely they would have carried out a number of rehearsals before they left Russia, so they knew exactly how to apply the nerve agent safely and quickly to a door handle and knew that this method of assassination could work. This incident was the first use of chemical weapons in Europe since the Second World War, our people engaged in the clean up, had no idea what they were dealing with, they had never had to clean up after an incident of this kind before, they were therefore quite rightly being extremely cautious, since they did not know what risk might be posed by anything contaminated by the Novichok. The Russian assassins for obvious reasons could not wear CBRN/hazmat suits, whereas our people could, since obviously they weren’t worried about being spotted walking around in this gear. Therefore since they had the gear better that they should wear it than not, imagine what the media would be saying if another policeman or a soldier had got seriously sick or had even died, because they were not wearing proper PPE, or if another member of the public got sick because they hadn’t cleaned up everything. Any other stupid objections you’d like to raise francesca ?

      • Servus could only add that even with the training and observing of all precautions, application of or even handling of the Novichok agent was still a risky business this is why a military doctor was accompanying the killer. Otherwise, there would be no need for an “outsider” (the doctor) in the assassination team.

        You are doing fine “Francesca”, adding more tangents, gloves, glyphosate, baby wipes, still on page 15 of the “Internet subversions , lies and manipulations for dummies ” ?

    • bananaman

      RX Hexogen is an explosive chemical not a toxic one. Only protection needed would be a bomb suit but if that lot went up it would not offer much protection.

      • Jeroen

        What protectionsuit did Ryazan bomb disposal squad member Yuri Tkachenko wear when in in the night of 22/23 september 1999 in the cellar of the Ryazan appartement he took the detonator device, consisting of a timer/electronic watch, battery, wires (something resembling a casing for a hunting riffle) and possible other electronics, out of the middle 50 kg bag with RDX hexogen, out of a total of 3 such bags?

        Yuri Tkachenko should be a Hero of Russiya, did he get a medal for what he did that night in that cellar in Ryazan?

    • Jeroen

      Which protection suit did the Ryazan bomb disposal squad member Yuri T. wear in the night of 22/23 September 1999 when he removed the detonator of the middle one of 3 sacks with 50 kg hexogen explosives “Sugar” in that cellar of that Ryazan appartement block?

  6. Stephen

    An excellent investigative channel and likely confirmation as to ‘who’s who’ in the Salisbury attack. However it would be good to see Bellingcat investigate with the same determination whether or not Yulia Skripal is an agent for the British Secret Service and had been recalled from Russia on Saturday [3.3.2018] due to her cover being compromised. This would explain the emphatic and quick reaction by Johnson and May that the poisoning was a Russian GRU [retaliatory] operation because they knew both Skripals were on the UK payroll and at least one [Yulia] being an active agent. Such an investigation might be difficult for UK based journalists because of contravening the Official Secrets Act and DSMA-Notices that have been issued pertinent to this case.

    • Jeroen

      And investigate Yulia’s still not identified fiancé “Stanislav”

      Friends say snaps Yulia uploaded of him and members of her family on social media had recently vanished.
      Pal Irina Petrova told The Sun on Sunday: “The social networks have been cleaned a lot. Yulia posted a lot of photos with family and close ones but they are no longer there.”

      • Stephen

        Hello Jeroen: One thing I emphasised during lectures to Communications degree students, was to date, copy & save anything of interest on the web because it can be taken down anytime – more so now that ever. Exasperated by the ‘right to be forgotten’ – et al.

      • Stephen

        Agreed Jeroen, the ‘boyfriend’ reason for giving-up life in England and going back to Russia a few years ago didn’t ring true to me and warrants investigation. The UK would have assisted in multiple entry visas for her boyfriend, and if they have such a close and long relationship – why not marry and have the best of all Worlds? Conversely, the boyfriend may have refused to settle in UK and/or Yulia genuinely prefers mother Russia. Interesting that the GRU duo arrived on 2nd, Yulia on 3d, poisoned on 4th March. DSMA-Notices issued to UK press on the 7th. A botched operation resulting in an innocent English women dying and the targets now in hiding. Heads should roll, even loyal Russians are laughing at the incompetence.

    • Servus

      Please provide some proof that Julia Skripal was British secret agent and thet she was called home or that her secret ways was discovered.
      BTW who are you be privy of such highly confidential information that not even RT or Sputnik is aware of ?

      You guys should turn to the page 16 of your “Brief guide of an internet diversant for dummies”, it says, “when it gets too hot, and all trick fail, you have been uncovered and all new attempts to say something lead to even more attention being paid to our inability to respond and make us look even more fully and stupid, cool it, wait until interest passes, stop making things worse than they are already”.

  7. Servus

    BUT what has happened to the medievalist tourists Mr Borishov and Mr Petrov ?

    Did they even take a picture of the Salisbury cathedral or recorded ticking of the mediaeval clock (still in operation) ? No selfie with the clock tower? No nothing in any social media, FB, Instagram or their Russian counterparts? And looking at the their images from the cameras, perfect tourists with no camera hanging round their bellies? And no umbrella when it was supposed to snow?

    Normal businessmen have suppliers, customers, prospects, associates, employees, competitors, friends, family, neighbours, occasional acquaintances, school mates., home address, business adders… but for some reason Russian journalists were not able to localise anybody and interview any person knowing these two square faced fellows with sophisticated interests.

    This is amazing.

    Difficult not to think that both guys entered military career very early in their life, and lived inside the military since then. Working for GRU and special forces isolated them further from normal life, especially after been given false identities.

  8. Jeroen

    “Neither will I administer a poison to anybody when asked to do so, nor will I suggest such a course.” part of the earliest surviving version, (ca. 275 AD), of the Hippocratic Oath.

    Did Aleksandr Mishkin take the Hippocratic oath when he graduated S Kirov Military Medical Academy, or became a doctor?

    Or didn’t he, only taking the military oath?

    Russian oath as amended on January 5, 1992
    “I, (full name), join the military and swear allegiance to the Russian Federation and its people. I swear to observe the Constitution and laws of the Russian Federation, to make demands of military regulations, orders of commanders and superiors entrusted to me legitimately duties. I swear, being in the military, be conscientious, honest, worthy to carry the associated difficulties. Courageously, sparing their lives, protect people and municipal interests of the Russian Federation. I swear not to use a weapon against their own people and their legitimately elected government. I undertake military service anywhere in the country and the Russian Federation to observe the laws of the country, on the ground that will perform military service.
    If I break the oath taken by me, it is ready to bear responsibility established by the laws of the Russian Federation. ”
    The Oath in the Russian Federation (the last test version) (28 March 1998)
    “I, (full name), do solemnly swear allegiance to their own homeland — Russian Federation. I swear to faithfully observe the Constitution of Russian Federation, strictly to make demands of military regulations, orders of commanders and superiors.
    I swear to adequately perform military duty courageously defend freedom, independence and constitutional order of the Russian Federation, the people and the Fatherland! ”

    How about this part of Hippocratic oath?
    “Into whatsoever houses I enter, I will enter to help the sick, and I will abstain from all intentional wrong-doing and harm, especially from abusing the bodies of man or woman, bond or free.”

    Did Aleksandr Mishkin violate his oath?

    • Grubbie

      I wonder what his doctor granny thinks of all this?She must have recognized him the moment the British police released his photo.Dr Mishkins allegiance these days is only to the mob and the man with the scary and dead eyes plunged into the depths of depravity and murder a long time ago.

    • Grubbie

      Let the facts speak for themselves. Hundreds of family members and colleagues of Mishkin and Chepiga are now in hiding. It would be unsurprising if some of Bellingcats information had been unknowingly spoon fed to them by MI6 (not that I believe this)but that doesn’t mean its wrong.How about you and Putin coming up with a credible version of events?

      • Tourist

        About me? I have nothing to do with that. There seems to be a campaign to miscredit BC, this is the point.

        • Grubbie

          So you agree the facts are correct?BC acknowledges the work others have contributed. Are you suggesting that BC is taking someone else’s glory?For me the truth is the point.

          • Yuri Ionov

            No, I don’t agree.
            The photo of Mishkins’ drivers licence at the archived file looks very unconvincing and contradicting to common sense and formal logic. Looks like the fabrication to me.

          • Grubbie

            Yuri, it seems that it’s just one photo you have a problem with, what about all the others?

          • Servus

            Youri, you seem to have entered a base comment under different name, the “tourist”. I know, it’s late and you have several windows opened to differnet blogs.
            You say that “The photo of Mishkins’ drivers licence at the archived file looks very unconvincing and contradicting to common sense and formal logic. Looks like the fabrication to me.”

            The nice and round phrase “contradicting to common sense and formal logic” is empty of meaning unless you provide this common sense explanation and a “formal logic” argument. And you have been unable to do that. I’m excited by a perceptive of an image analysis with “formal logic” !!!
            Are you sure you understand this notion ?

          • Yuri Ionov

            How many times should I explain that the bottom part of the left edge of the photo does not aligns with the top part of the left edge. It is clearly seen with the naked eye. You better find the photo from CCTV cameras where Boshirov and Petrov or Chepiga and Mishkin or all four of them spray Novichok on Skripal’s door.

          • Lena

            The young Mishkin’s photo was on a thick sheet of photographic paper, cropped by a stamp (all four sides and round corners cut in one motion) and glued onto the drivers license blank. Yuri, you assumed that the cropping was as I sketched on the left at . In imperfect reality it was cropped as I sketched on the right. Do you understand now?

            Now please try to explain how you managed to ignore all other evidence. Such detachment from reality is called schizophrenia.

          • Grubbie

            Yuri, I think I might know what you are talking about now,the black line on the left-hand side. I am fairly certain that this is a square on the page so that the person who sticks the photo on before laminating knows where to put it.
            It’s interesting that you talk about 4 assassins, where did you get that number from?

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