Putin 'probably approved' Litvinenko killing: judge

LONDON - President Vladimir Putin probably approved a plan by Russia's FSB security service to kill former agent Alexander Litvinenko, a British judge said Thursday.

See Full Article

In a lengthy report, Judge Robert Owen said that he is certain Litvinenko was given tea laced with a fatal dose of polonium-210 at a London hotel in November 2006.

He said there is a "strong probability" that the FSB directed the killing, and the operation was "probably approved" by Putin.

Litvinenko, a former FSB agent, fled to Britain in 2000 and became a vocal critic of Russia's security service and of Putin, whom he accused of links to organized crime.

Owen said Litvinenko "was regarded as having betrayed the FSB" with his actions, and that "there were powerful motives for organizations and individuals within the Russian state to take action against Mr. Litvinenko, including killing him."

Marina Litvinenko said outside the High Court she was "very pleased that the words my husband spoke on his deathbed when he accused Mr. Putin have been proved by an English court."

Moscow has always strongly denied involvement in Litvinenko's death, and Russia refuses to extradite the two main suspects, Andrei Lugovoi and Dmitry Kovtun.

Litvinenko, who had become a vocal critic of Russian President Vladimir Putin, died after he was poisoned with polonium-210, an isotope that is deadly even if ingested in tiny quantities.

He had fled from Russia to Britain in 2000 after breaking with Putin and his inner circle.

In his 326-page report, Owen said that based on the evidence he had seen, the operation to kill Litvinenko was "probably" approved by then-FSB head Nikolai Petrushov and by Putin.

Owen said Litvinenko "had repeatedly targeted President Putin" with "highly personal" public criticism.

The British government appointed Owen to head a public inquiry into the slaying, which soured relations between London and Moscow. He heard from dozens of witnesses during months of public hearings last year, and also saw secret British intelligence evidence.



Advertisements

Latest Canada & World News

  • Thousands flee wildfire near Yosemite National Park

    World News CTV News
    MARIPOSA, Calif. -- A blaze burning in foothills west of Yosemite National Park destroyed dozens of structures and forced thousands to flee Gold Rush-era towns but fire crews have been able to stop it from reaching a threatened community on the foothills of the Sierra Nevada. Source
  • Trump reportedly ending CIA plan to arm Syrian rebels

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump has decided to halt the CIA's years-long covert program to arm and train moderate Syrian rebels battling the regime of the nation's president Bashar al-Assad. Russia had long pushed the United States to end the program. Source
  • Thai general among dozens convicted of human trafficking

    World News CBC News
    A Thai army general was one of dozens of people convicted in a major human trafficking trial that included 103 defendants accused of involvement in a modern-day slavery trade. Lt.-Gen. Manas Kongpaen was convicted of several offences Wednesday involving trafficking and taking bribes in the case involving migrants from Myanmar and Bangladesh. Source
  • 8th right whale found dead in Gulf of St. Lawrence, 1 more entangled

    Canada News CBC News
    An eighth North Atlantic right whale has been found dead and another is entangled in fishing gear in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, the Marine Animal Response Society said in a Facebook post. In the past two months, seven other right whales have been found dead in the the Gulf of St. Source
  • 'Get out there, get 'er done and, of course, be safe': Tiny Riske Creek, B.C., fights the fire

    Canada News CBC News
    In the tiny central B.C. community of Riske Creek, logging and ranching are a way of life, but in recent days, many of the 90 or so residents have found themselves on the front line of one of the largest fires in the province. Source
  • Ship that may have sunk admiral's career to be unveiled in Quebec

    Canada News CBC News
    The ship that may have cost the military's second-in-command his career will be formally unveiled in an elaborate ceremony Thursday at Quebec's Chantier Davie Shipyard. The MV Asterix will serve as a temporary naval supply ship, starting early in the new year, after it goes through a series of shakedown trials. Source
  • Supreme Court building to get $1B rehab in 2023, well after systems risk failure

    Canada News CBC News
    The Liberal government has launched a $1-billion project to rehabilitate the crumbling Supreme Court building, though key systems are at risk of failure long before any repairs begin. A water-damaged section of the parking garage roof could collapse by the end of next year, and mechanical and electrical systems are predicted to fail by 2020 and 2021, says an internal document obtained by CBC News under the Access to Information Act. Source
  • Midnight in an Istanbul park: Syrian children play in the shadow of war

    World News CBC News
    It's nearing midnight in a dimly lit park in Istanbul, not far from the sea, and eight-year-old Kais is scooting around on his new bike. He's joined by a dozen other Syrian boys and girls, scampering on the slides and laughing on the swings under a full moon. Source
  • Trump's 'influential' pick for ambassador to Canada faces Senate hearing

    World News CBC News
    U.S. President Donald Trump's pick for the next ambassador to Canada, a deep-pocketed Republican donor with influential allies in Congress and family ties with a Kentucky coal empire, faces her Senate confirmation hearing Thursday. Kelly Knight Craft will testify before the Senate committee on foreign relations in a joint session with Trump's nominees for ambassador to NATO and the U.K. Source
  • Members of Trump's inner circle to face Senate committees

    World News CTV News
    WASHINGTON - Members of the Trump campaign's inner circle, including his eldest son and son-in-law, are being called before Senate committees next week to talk about the 2016 election. The week has the potential to deliver the most high-profile congressional testimony involving the Russian meddling probes since former FBI Director James Comey appeared in June. Source