Alexander Litvinenko's widow calls for a public inquiry into the poisoning of the Russian spy in an op-ed for today's Times of London. Both the British foreign secretary and Scotland Yard have sought to dissuade her from petitioning for an inquest, saying it would prejudge a criminal trial against chief suspect Andrei Lugovoy. But after 15 months, writes Marina Litvinenko, it is clear that he will never be extradited.
The UK says it has an "ironclad" case against Lugovoy, who has since been elected to the Russian parliament. "While the British authorities are constrained by due process," Litvinenko writes, "the Kremlin has embarked on a propaganda campaign designed to divert the blame from itself." An inquest, she says, would expose Lugovoy as a murderer to the Russian people—and Vladimir Putin as his patron.