Red Alert

U.K. Restaurant Is Focus of Mystery Russian Spy ‘Poisoning’

An Italian restaurant has become the focus of the investigation into the possible poisoning of a turncoat Russian spy and a woman said to be his daughter in the provincial British town of Salisbury. Zizzi restaurant, part of a chain of Italian eateries across the U.K., has been closed down by the authorities after Sergei Skripal, 66, and a woman in her thirties, reportedly his daughter, Yulya, who was visiting the U.K., were found unconscious on a bench at a shopping center on Sunday afternoon, a two-minute walk from the cafe. Both are now in critical condition at a local hospital. Authorities said they were being treated for the suspected exposure to an unknown substance. The inclusion of a restaurant in the investigation has prompted comparisons to the murder of Alexander Litvinenko, another former Russian spy who had fallen out of favor with the Kremlin, who was killed when a pot of tea he was served in a London hotel was spiked with radioactive polonium-210 by Russian agents. Litvinenko’s widow, Marina, told BBC Radio 4’s World Tonight: “It’s like deja vu, like what happened to me 11 years ago.” Wiltshire Police said there was “no known risk to the public’s health.”