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U.K. expels Russian diplomats over ex-spy attack

Photo: Jack Taylor / Getty Images

British Prime Minister Theresa May announced the expulsion of 23 Russian diplomats and other measures in response to the nerve agent attack on ex-spy Sergei Skripal and his daughter on British soil. She told the House of Commons today that "there is no alternative conclusion" other than Russia's culpability for the attack.

Why it matters: May's statement marks a huge escalation in tensions between the U.K. and Russia — especially as she chose to mention Russian President Vladimir Putin by name. She had notably harsh language for Russia's handling of the situation, saying that the Kremlin had "demonstrated complete disdain" for the attack and that Russia " treated the use of a military-grade nerve agent in Europe with contempt, sarcasm, and defiance."