Yulia Skripal turns down offer of assistance from Russian embassy

The 33-year-old said "no one speaks for me, or for my father"

Yulia Skripal turns down offer of assistance from Russian embassy

Yulia Skripal. Image: Facebook

Yulia Skripal has turned down an offer of help from the Russian embassy in London and told her outspoken cousin not to contact her.

In her first statement since being discharged from hospital following a nerve agent attack in Salisbury, issued by London's Metropolitan Police on her behalf, the 33-year-old said she did "not wish to avail" herself to the services of the embassy - and warned that nobody speaks for her or her father Sergei other than themselves.

She thanked her cousin Viktoria Skripal "for her concern", but asked her not to try to visit or contact her after a series of media interviews in which she speculated over the nature of the attack and her relatives' recovery.

Ms Skripal has again thanked staff at Salisbury District Hospital for their "obvious clinical expertise" and "kindness", adding that she has missed the doctors and nurses who looked after her.

She continued: "I have left my father in their care, and he is still seriously ill. I too am still suffering with the effects of the nerve agent used against us.

"I find myself in a totally different life than the ordinary one I left just over a month ago, and I am seeking to come to terms with my prospects, whilst also recovering from this attack on me.

"I have specially trained officers available to me, who are helping to take care of me and to explain the investigative processes that are being undertaken."

The Maltings in Salisbury, UK where Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found on a bench after they were attacked with a nerve agent | Image: Jonathan Brady/PA Wire/PA Images

The statement released on Wednesday evening was the first time Ms Skripal had commented on the welfare of her 66-year-old father, a former Russian double agent.

She said that while her own recovery was going well, she was still trying to "come to terms with my current situation".

It has now been more than five weeks since she and her father were found slumped on a bench on March 4th after they were poisoned, prompting international condemnation of Russia for its alleged involvement.

Ms Skripal, who was taken to a secure location after leaving hospital, said she hoped to one day be strong enough to give a full media interview on the incident.

But she added: "Until that time, I want to stress that no one speaks for me, or for my father, but ourselves. I thank my cousin Viktoria for her concern for us, but ask that she does not visit me or try to contact me for the time being.

"Her opinions and assertions are not mine and they are not my father's.

"For the moment I do not wish to speak to the press or the media, and ask for their understanding and patience whilst I try to come to terms with my current situation."

Regarding the offer from the Russian embassy, which has previously said it had not been granted consular access to Ms Skripal, she said: "At the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services, but, if I change my mind I know how to contact them."

Dr Christine Blanshard, Medical Director, and Lorna Wilkinson, director of nursing, make a statement outside Salisbury District Hospital to announce an update on Yulia and Sergei Skripals' conditions | Image: Ben Mitchell/PA Wire/PA Images

Her statement comes a day before the chemical weapons watchdog plans to publish its report into the attack.

The Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) has been investigating since last month, having rejected a request from Moscow for it to be involved.

Russia has maintained its stance on the case and disputes the British explanation that the Skripals were poisoned by novichok.

Its embassy had also accused Britain of moving Ms Skripal from hospital against her will.