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Police in Salisbury. Photo: Matt Cardy / Getty Images

Investigators now believe that a nerve agent was used to poison a former Russian double agent, Sergei Skripal, and his daughter in the English town of Salisbury on Sunday. Both victims remain in critical condition, as is a police officer who was on scene. Anti-terror police are treating the case as attempted murder.

Between the lines: Suspicion has, naturally, fallen on Russia (Vladimir Putin, himself a former intelligence officer, has vowed publicly that traitors will be killed) and the nature of the poison further indicates a state may be responsible. Moscow denies involvement.

Skripal was convicted in 2006 of betraying the identities of Russian intelligence agents working undercover in Europe to MI6, Britain’s intelligence service. He had been living in the U.K. since being freed in a U.S.-Russian prisoner swap in 2010. A number of Russians have previously died under suspicious circumstances in the U.K.

What they're saying: Russia's Embassy in the UK released a statement Wednesday raising questions over the U.K. government response to Skripal's illness — Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has said the UK will respond robustly if the Russian government is found to have been involved.

Go deeper: Suspicions of poison and warnings to Russia over double agent's illness.

Go deeper

President Joe Biden vows to be "a president for all Americans"

Moments after taking the oath of office, President Joe Biden sought to soothe a nation riven by political divisions and a global pandemic, while warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country and defeat a "virus that silently stalks the the country."

Why it matters: From the same steps that a pro-Trump mob launched an assault on Congress two weeks earlier, the new president paid deference to the endurance of American political institutions.

Updated 48 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Inauguration Day dashboard

U.S. Capitol and stage are lit at sunrise ahead of the inauguration of Joe Biden. Photo: Patrick Semansky - Pool/Getty Images

President Biden has delivered his inaugural address at the Capitol, calling for an end to the politics as total war but warning that "we have far to go" to heal the country.

What's next: Biden and Vice President Harris review readiness of military troops, a long-standing tradition to signify the peaceful transfer of power.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

In photos: The Biden and Harris inauguration

Joe Biden is sworn in as the 46th president of the United States. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris were inaugurated as president and vice president respectively in a ceremony at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday morning.

Why it matters: Top Democrats and Republicans gathered for the peaceful transfer of power only two weeks after an unprecedented siege on the building by Trump supporters to disrupt certification of Biden's victory. Trump did not attend Wednesday's ceremony.