Police issue stark Novichok warning as nerve agent source hunt continues

Investigators look at a piece of evidence which looks like a satellite phone recovered from Dawn Sturgess' hostel in Salisbury

A British man poisoned with the Novichok nerve agent 10 days ago has regained consciousness and is now in a critical but stable condition, Salisbury District Hospital said on Tuesday.

Dawn Sturgess, 44, died in hospital at the weekend and her partner Charlie Rowley remains critically ill in hospital. "Charlie is still very unwell and will continue to require specialist, round-the-clock care here at Salisbury District Hospital", the statement said.

Russian Federation has committed an attack that resulted in the death of a Briton, defense minister Gavin Williamson said on Monday, linking Russian Federation to the incident after a 44-year-old woman who was poisoned by nerve agent Novichok died.

A woman who died after being poisoned with a nerve agent that also struck a former Russian spy in March must have handled a contaminated item, and tracking it down is key to police investigations, Britain's top counter-terrorism officer said.

Sturgess's family paid tribute to the mother of three, calling her "a gentle soul who was generous to a fault".

The BBC understands the white Audi belonged to a paramedic who had been with Ms Sturgess in an ambulance when she fell ill.

He said: "The brutal fact is we don't know where (Mr Rowley and Ms Sturgess) found it".

The two of them spent many weeks in hospital but survived the attack.

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Detectives are still investigating the attempted murders of the Skripals and are considering whether the separate incidents may be linked.

The UK government has blamed Russian Federation for the incident, but the country's authorities deny any involvement.

The Metropolitan police assistant commissioner, Neil Basu, said on Monday that the substance that led to Sturgess and Rowley falling ill was in a vessel or container when the couple came across it.

Later, he told MPs in the Commons that Porton Down scientists had been able to recover novichok from the blood of Sturgess and Rowley.

However officials have said there is no evidence the pair visited any of the sites in Salisbury which were decontaminated after the attack on the Skripals.

Residents in Amesbury and Salisbury are being warned not to pick up "any foreign object which could contain liquid or gel" in a new advisory following the death of Novichok victim Dawn Sturgess.

"This is particularly important as families are starting to prepare for their children's summer holidays and so I am asking that people are extra vigilant".

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