‘Special Units’ in Russia Were Trained in Ways of Skripal Attack, U.K. Says

‘Special Units’ in Russia Were Trained in Ways of Skripal Attack, U.K. Says Photo The house in Salisbury, England, where Sergei V. Skripal lives. Agents say that the nerve agent with which he was poisoned was most likely applied to the home’s door handle. Credit Neil Hall/EPA, via Shutterstock Russia has been researching the application of chemical agents to door handles as a way to assassinate its enemies, and has been training personnel “from special units” to carry out such attacks, said Mark Sedwill, Britain’s national security adviser, on Friday in a letter to the secretary general of NATO.
Mr. Sedwill’s letter, the most detailed account of British intelligence on the subject to be shared with the public to date, also revealed that President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia was “closely involved in the chemical weapons program” beginning in the mid-2000s.
During that period, the letter claims, Russia was secretly developing the nerve agents known as Novichok that British officials say ..

A Libyan Strongman Looks to Washington, but a Health Crisis Looms

A Libyan Strongman Looks to Washington, but a Health Crisis Looms Photo In Benghazi’s devastated downtown, ex-fighters warmed themselves over a bonfire made from broken furniture. The forces of Gen. Khalifa Hifter routed the last Islamist militias from Benghazi in December. Credit Declan Walsh/The New York Times BENGHAZI, Libya — Pulverized buildings daubed with the names of fallen fighters line the ghostly seafront in Benghazi, Libya’s second largest city. Land mines and booby-trapped bodies are scattered across the rubble. At night, men huddle over bonfires piled with broken furniture.
This picture of devastation is what victory looks like for Gen. Khalifa Hifter, the military strongman whose forces routed the last Islamist militias from Benghazi in December. After three years of grinding combat, and with the help of foreign allies, General Hifter now controls most of eastern Libya and has become the most powerful if polarizing figure in a fractured landscape.
Now, as he aims to cons..