March 7, 2018 / 4:18 PM / 4 months ago

Gravestones mark family losses of Russian agent struck down by mystery substance

SALISBURY, England, March 7 (Reuters) - In the years before Sergei Skripal was struck down with his daughter by a mystery substance outside a British shopping centre, the former Russian double agent lost both a wife and a son.

Their gravestones in London Road Cemetery in Salisbury, where Skripal, 66, started a new life after being swapped in a Cold War-style spy exchange on the tarmac of Vienna airport, were well-tended with fresh flowers.

Skripal, who betrayed dozens of Russian agents to British intelligence, and his 33-year-old daughter, Yulia, were found unconscious on a bench outside a shopping centre in the southern English city of Salisbury on Sunday afternoon.

Both are critically ill.

His son, Alexander, died on July 18, 2017. He was 43. British media reported that he died while in St Petersburg, Russia’s former imperial capital.

His wife, Liudmila, died on October 23, 2012 of cancer, after Skripal was swapped for 10 Russian spies in 2010. She was 60. (Reporting by Guy Faulconbridge; editing by Stephen Addison)

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