Latest: Russian embassy says secret new identities for Skripals would be 'abduction'

1.20pm: The Russian embassy said that the possibility of the Skripals being given secret new identities overseas would be seen as "an abduction of the two Russian nationals".

A statement, in the form of a Q&A, said:

"Q: How do you assess the recent reports on the possibility of Sergey Skripal and Yulia Skripal to be resettled to the USA, Australia, Canada or New Zealand and offered new identities?

"A: This would be another gross violation of international law. Since the poisoning of Sergey and Yulia Skripal the United Kingdom has not complied with its international obligations under the Vienna Convention on Consular Relations and the bilateral Consular Convention by not allowing consular access to the Russian citizens and not providing any verifiable information on their wishes in that respect.

"The explanation regarding the rejection of Victoria Skripal's visa application, who intended to meet her relatives in Britain, was absurd and farfetched.

With a secret resettlement of Mr and Ms Skripal all opportunities to hear their version of the events of 4 March will highly likely be lost forever. The world, while having no opportunity to interact with them, will have every reason to see this as an abduction of the two Russian nationals or at least as their isolation."

Earlier:: Asked for her reaction to news that Yulia Skripal has been released from hospital, Prime Minister Theresa May said: "Well, obviously I welcome the fact that Yulia Skripal has been discharged from hospital and I wish her the best for her continuing recovery, and I'd like to say a huge thank you to all the staff at the hospital in Salisbury who have looked after her and her father so well."

Salisbury District Hospital medical director Dr Christine Blanshard also vpaid tribute to the staff at the hospital where the Skripals have been receiving treatment.

"The past few weeks have been enormously testing for all our staff. They have pulled together not just to deliver outstanding care for the individuals caught up in these terrible events, but to all our patients, as they do day in and day out.

"Both our clinical staff and our staff behind the scenes have been a credit to our hospital, to the NHS, and to the city of Salisbury," she said.

Dr Christine Blanshard, Medical Director, and Lorna Wilkinson, director of nursing, make a statement outside Salisbury District Hospital today. Photo: Ben Mitchell/PA Wire.

8.10am:Yulia Skripal, who was poisoned along with her former double agent father Sergei in Salisbury last month, has been discharged from hospital.

The 33-year-old Russian national had spent more than a month in hospital after coming into contact with the military-grade nerve agent Novichok.

She is reported to have been released on Monday and taken to a secure location.

The pair were left fighting for their lives after being found unconscious on a park bench in the Wiltshire town on March 4.

- PA


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