Charlie Rowley
© Daily Star
Charlie Rowley showing signs of recovery.
A British hospital says a man who was exposed to a deadly Soviet-made nerve agent has regained consciousness and is now in stable condition. The July 10 announcement by the Salisbury District Hospital about Charlie Rowley came two days after his girlfriend, Dawn Sturgess, died from exposure to Novichok.

"We have seen a small but significant improvement in the condition of Charlie Rowley. He is in a critical but stable condition and is now conscious," the hospital said in a statement.

The two fell ill on June 30 and authorities later determined they had been exposed to Novichok, a deadly nerve agent developed by the Soviet Union and used in the poisoning of former Russian double agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter, Yulia, in March.

Police suspect Rowley and Sturgess were accidentally exposed to some residual Novichok left over from the March incident. The Skripals have recovered, but the death of Sturgess prompted Defense Minister Gavin Williamson on July 9 to accuse Russia of committing an attack on British soil. The Kremlin rejected the allegations, calling them absurd.

The poisoning of the Skripals prompted a major diplomatic crisis, with London, and many of its allies, expelling diplomats, and Moscow responding in kind.