Russian prosecutors say British investigators request assistance in Litvinenko case

Monday, December 4th 2006, 6:15 am
By: News On 6

MOSCOW (AP) _ British coroners have asked their Russian counterparts for help during their upcoming trip to Moscow to investigate the poisoning death of a former KGB spy, prosecutors said Monday.

Alexander Litvinenko, 43, died Nov. 23 in London after being exposed to a rare radioactive element.

The Prosecutor General's office said the Russian coroners have agreed to help the British investigators in their probe. A Foreign Ministry spokesman said Russia has already issued visas for the team.

British law enforcement authorities have said a team of nine officers planned to travel to Moscow within days to interview several people. They include Andrei Lugovoi, another former spy who met Litvinenko on Nov. 1, the day he fell ill. FBI agents have also been involved in the probe.

In a deathbed accusation Litvinenko blamed Russian President Vladimir Putin for the poisoning. The Kremlin has denied the accusations.