DISINFO: Novichok is a purely "Western product"
The Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) announced that a substance similar to the neurotoxic agent Novichok was detected in the body of Alexey Navalny. However, Novichok is a “purely Western product” which does not exist in Russia. The Novichok chemical warfare agent exists in about 140 variants in Western countries, but not in Russia. The structure and mass spectrum of “Novichok”, which is allegedly responsible for the poisoning of double agent Sergei Skripal and Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, was first revealed in the American spectroscopy database (American Institute of Standards) in 1988.
This is part of a pro-Kremlin disinformation campaign on the poisoning of Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny after the use of a chemical nerve agent of the Novichok group was established beyond any doubt by a specialist Bundeswehr laboratory. This is also a narrative employed during the Sergey Skripal case in 2018. In September 2017, the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) confirmed the full destruction of the 39,967 metric tons of chemical weapons possessed by Russia, but Novichoks were never declared to the OPCW and weren’t included in the Chemical Weapons Convention until 2019. Novichok is known to be more powerful than VX and was developed in Russia in 1970s and in 1980s. The use of multiple and simultaneous versions about an event involving questionable actions by the Russian government or its allies, in order to confound citizens about the actual truth, is a recurrent pro-Kremlin disinformation strategy. Other examples of pro-Kremlin disinformation narratives on Alexei Navalny contain claims that only caffeine and alcohol were found in his blood, that the US wanted to use it to block Nord Stream 2 and Russia’s vaccine against coronavirus, that the West hopes that he dies to have an excuse for new sanctions et al.