October 12, 2018 / 1:50 PM / 7 days ago

Russian UK envoy denies Kremlin tried hack computers and murder ex-spy

LONDON (Reuters) - Russia’s ambassador to London denied on Friday that spies from his country’s military intelligence agency had tried to kill former double agent Sergei Skripal and hack various organizations across the world.

Russian Ambassador to Britain Alexander Yakovenko addresses the media at a news conference in the official Russian Ambassador's residence in London, Britain October 12, 2018. REUTERS/Henry Nicholls

Ambassador Alexander Yakovenko told reporters relations were at a low because the British government was trying to carry out a campaign aimed at discrediting Russia.

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When asked directly whether he accepted the British accusation that agents from Russia’s GRU military intelligence agency had tried to kill Skripal in March, Yakovenko said: “No we don’t accept that.”

Asked whether the two men accused by Britain of trying to kill Skripal were GRU agents, he refused to answer the question directly.

He denied accusations from Britain, the United States and the Netherlands that the GRU had hacked organizations across the world to undermine Western democracies.

“Of course I deny it because this is part of a general campaign launched in Britain and supported by the United States... to discredit my country,” he said.

Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; editing by Stephen Addison

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