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British man poisoned with Novichok regains consciousness - hospital

11 July 2018

The man who fell ill after he was exposed to the nerve agent novichok in Amesbury has made a "small but significant improvement".

Authorities have broadened their investigation into the nerve agent poisoning of an English couple, seizing a vehicle in a third community in southwestern England. "He is in a critical but stable condition and is now conscious", the hospital said in a statement on Tuesday.

Police said the pair came into contact with the toxin after Sturgess handled a highly contaminated item in the town of Amesbury, just a few miles from Salisbury where nominally retired Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were poisoned in March.

Dawn Sturgess. 44, died after consuming the nerve agent while her boyfriend Charlie Rowley, 45, is still fighting for his life in hospital.

"Charlie is still very unwell", the hospital said.

"Our focus and priority is to find and identify any container that we think might be the source of this contamination", Basu said on Monday.

Basu said the severe reaction of Sturgess and Rowley meant they must have received a high dose of Novichok.

The wide investigation is now a homicide inquiry.

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Public health officials said at a press conference from the hospital that the first four rescued boys had low temperatures. This means that a total of eleven boys are now out of the caves, and on their way for hospital observation via helicopter.

"I want to emphasise to everyone in the Salisbury and Amesbury area that nobody, adult or child, should pick up any foreign object which could contain liquid or gel, in the interests of their own safety", she said. Authorities quickly launched an investigation into her death.

Police officers guard a cordon in Salisbury, one of five locations in the city and Amesbury under investigation.

Dawn Sturgess and Charlie Rowley, were found unconscious. The search is focused on their homes and a park in Salisbury. Skripal, 67, and his 33-year-old daughter survived the attack in the English town of Salisbury, which the British government blames on Russian Federation.

A Kremlin spokesman on Monday (Tuesday NZT) expressed condolences over Sturgess' death.

British officials have demanded answers from Moscow for the latest poisoning. Peskov added that such attacks present a danger not only inside the United Kingdom, but also in Europe as a whole.

Javid, who is chairing a meeting of the government's emergency committee on Monday, has said there were no plans at this stage for further sanctions against Russian Federation.

Asked whether the death could cloud the upcoming US-Russia summit in Helsinki next week, Peskov replied that the poisoning "has no relation" to the meeting.

British man poisoned with Novichok regains consciousness - hospital