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Precautions in place to protect mourners at funeral of nerve agent victim

Dawn Sturgess was exposed to Novichok in England.

Dawn Sturgess
Dawn Sturgess
Image: Metropolitan Police/PA Wire/PA Images

PRECAUTIONS ARE BEING put in place to protect mourners at the funeral of a woman who was poisoned in England.

Dawn Sturgess (44) died on 8 July after collapsing in the Amesbury home she shared with her partner, Charlie Rowley, on 30 June.

They had both been exposed to a nerve agent, Novichok, but Rowley survived.

Police are examining a possible link between Sturgess’ death and the March poisoning of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia. Both survived the incident.

Sturgess, a mother-of-three, is set to be cremated in Salisbury tomorrow.

Sky News is reporting that there will be no pallbearers at the ceremony and that her coffin will already be in place when people arrive.

‘As safe as possible’ 

Philip Bromiley, the vicar of Salisbury Diocese, told Sky News he has “absolute confidence in Public Health England and also the funeral directors”.

They have been doing a lot of work, they have put various measures in place to make sure everyone is as safe as possible.

“The coffin will be in situ when we arrive. The family will have 15 minutes of quiet with Dawn’s coffin.”

Britain has blamed Russia for the poisoning of Skripal, a former colonel in military intelligence who was jailed for betraying Russian agents to Britain’s MI6 security service. He left Russia for England in a 2010 spy swap.

Russia has strongly denied involvement in the Skripal attack, sparking a diplomatic row that has led to tit-for-tat diplomatic expulsions between Britain and its allies and Russia.

Contains reporting from © AFP 2018 

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Órla Ryan

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