Defense minister backs BIS task to investigate novichok history

The country’s defense minister Karla Šlechtová has backed President Miloš Zeman’s task for the counterintelligence service BIS to investigate whether the Czech Republic ever produced or stored the deadly nerve agent novichok. The minister said the decision was not redundant and expressed the hope it would confirm earlier information released.

Novichok was used in an attack against a former Russian spy and his daughter in Great Britain recently, drawing a sharp response from the EU, the US and Canada on Monday, in the expulsion of more than 100 Russian diplomats.

Earlier, Russia listed several states including the Czech Republic as possible countries linked to the nerve agent, which drew a sharp response from the Czech government and Prime Minister Andrej Babiš himself on Monday.

Novichok was developed in the former Soviet Union in the 1970s.

Author: Jan Velinger