U.S. to Offer New Identities, Protection to Former Russian Spy and Daughter

Former Russian-UK double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia will likely be offered “a new life in America in an attempt to protect them from further murder attempts,” The Times reports.

According to the newspaper, intelligence officials at MI6 have had discussions with their counterparts in the CIA about resettling the victims of the Salisbury poisoning. “They will be offered new identities,” a senior government figure said.

Security sources said Britain would want to ensure their safety by relocating them with one of the “five eyes” countries, the intelligence-sharing partnership that also includes America, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

“The obvious place to resettle them is in America, because they’re less likely to be killed there and it’s easier to protect them there under a new identity,” an intelligence source familiar with the negotiations added. “There’s a preference for them to be resettled in a five-eyes nation because their case would have huge security implications.”

The former spy and his daughter are both conscious according to senior sources, and will soon begin helping authorities with their investigation into the March 4 nerve agent attack that left the pair comatose in a Salisbury, UK park and sickened 21 others.

So far it is known the Novichoknerve agent was either smeared on a doorknob, at Sergi’s wife’s graveside, the air vents on Sergei’s BMW, and a “gift from friends” opened by Yulia at Zizi’s restaurant. Whatever the case, it also sickened 38 others.

Skripal is a former double agent who was imprisoned in Russia in 2006 after the Kremlin discovered he had been cooperating with British secret services since 1995. He was released and pardoned by then-president Dmitry Medvedev in 2010, and relocated to the UK as part of a spy swap.