Yulia Skripal ‘plans to return’ to Russia after Salisbury poisoning which left her ‘lucky to be alive’.
The daughter of former Russian spy Sergei Skripal appeared for the first time on camera since the March 4 attack.
Speaking at a secret location in London in her mother tongue, she confessed she still couldn’t believe she fell victim of an attack.
Ms Skripal, 33, told Reuters: “I came to the UK on the 3rd of March to visit my father, something I have done regularly in the past.
“After 20 days in a coma, I woke to the news that we had both been poisoned.
“I still find it difficult to come to terms with the fact that both of us were attacked.
“We are so lucky to have both survived this attempted assassination.”
Opening up on their recovery, she said it was “slow and extremely painful.”
Ms Skripal left the hospital on April 9, while her father, 66, was discharged from Salisbury District Hospital last Friday.
Speaking of the “devastating changes” that she lived through following her discharge, she added: “I was discharged from hospital on the 9th of April and continue to progress with treatment but my life has been turned upside down as I try to come to terms with the devastating changes thrust upon me both physically and emotionally.
“I take one day at a time and want to help care for my Dad till his full recovery.”
And speaking about her future, she added: “In the longer term I hope to return home to my country.”
Ms Skripal, who supplied her own, handwritten translation into English of her statement, explained she chose to speak to the media to “address a couple of issues”.
She said: “I ask that everyone respects the privacy of me and my father.
“We need time to recover and come to terms with everything that has happened.
“I’m grateful for the offers of assistance from the Russian Embassy but at the moment I do not wish to avail myself of their services.”
Possibly speaking about her cousin Viktoria, who released a series of interviews during the period Yulia was unconscious in the hospital, she said: “Also, I want to reiterate what I said in my earlier statement that no one speaks for me, or for my father, but ourselves.”
The poisoning of the Skripals stirred tensions between the UK and Russia after Prime Minister Theresa May accused the Kremlin of being behind the attack.
Speaking to Parliament, the PM said on March 12 it was “highly likely” that Russia was responsible for it.
The incident prompted nearly 30 Western countries to expel more than 150 Russian diplomats as an act of solidarity with the UK.
Russia has vehemently denied any allegations of involvement in the incident.