The former German Foreign Minister, Sigmar Gabriel, who had just left his post, proposed for an investigation into the circumstances of the assassination attempt on Sergei Skripal, to be conducted by an international group of experts, as he indicated on Thursday, March 15th, at an official ceremony of the German-Russian Forum, dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the creation of this non-governmental organization.
According to the former Foreign Minister of Germany, international experts should provide evidence to make conclusions about who is responsible for this crime. "All of us," Gabriel noted, referring to both Germany, the United Kingdom, and Russia, "are members of the UN organization for the control of chemical weapons and the monitoring of its destruction, and it would be the smartest course of action to entrust the investigation to this very organization, to provide it with all available information, and then to draw political conclusions."
This approach, according to Gabriel, would be in compliance with the standards of a state governed by the rule of law – someone is presumed innocent until the court has proved the opposite. He added, however, that respect for the presumption of innocence should in no way be seen as a means of "reducing the British anxiety or the avoidance of a scandal, which is without doubt an attempt to kill a man with chemical weapons." At the same time, Sigmar Gabriel warned against an increasingly hysterical, in his assessment, public debate and "the spiralling of mutual suspicions and the most eccentric versions," which remind him of very bad James Bond films.