RUSI JournalVolume 163Issue 4members only

Salisbury, Novichok and International Law on the Use of Force

Can the alleged poisoning be considered an armed attack?

Following Prime Minister Theresa May’s statement of 12 March 2018 in response to the Novichok incident in Salisbury, news reports and social media platforms were awash with talk that it constituted an armed attack by Russia against the UK, that the UK had a right to respond in self-defence, and even that an international armed conflict existed between the UK and Russia. The circumstances of the incident and the response of the UK government raise important questions o

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