“Of course, Roman Abramovich is trying to rehabilitate his public image. He was slapped with sanctions from both the UK and the EU as a result of his previous closeness and ties with the Kremlin and [Putin] himself. His assets have been frozen and he’s currently in the process of trying to find a buyer for Chelsea Football Club.
“A source close to Mr Abramovich said it wasn’t clear who had targeted the group but another newspaper which broke this story say that the Ukrainian side suspect the attack was carried out by hardliners in Moscow who they said wanted to sabotage talks to end this war.”
“A source confirmed that he did suffer suspected symptoms of poisoning after that meeting of peace talks between Russian and Ukrainian negotiators, to try and find a solution to this conflict. They said Abramovich, along with two Ukrainian officials, suffered symptoms that included red eyes, constant and painful tearing, peeling of skin on their faces and hands as well as some sight loss.
“The next day the group of negotiators drove from Kyiv to Lviv on the way to Poland and then Istanbul, to continue informal negotiations with the Russian side. A Bellingcat investigator was asked to help provide an examination by chemical weapons specialists.
“Based on remote and on-site examinations, the experts concluded that the symptoms are most likely the result of international poisoning with an undefined chemical weapon.metasports
“An alternative less likely hypothesis was use of microwave irradiation. The symptoms gradually subsided in the course of the following week.”
However, a US official told Sky News: “The intelligence highly suggests this was environmental,” adding: “E.g., not poisoning.”
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, declined to elaborate.
In a series of tweets, Bellingcat added more details, saying: “Abramovich, along with another Russian entrepreneur, had taken part in the negotiations alongside Ukraine’s MP Rustem Umerov. The negotiation round on the afternoon of 3 March took place on Ukrainian territory, and lasted until about 10pm.