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Widow: Alexander Litvinenko accused Putin of being a paedophile

Marina Litvinenko told the inquiry that her husband accused Russian president Vladimir Putin of being a paedophile.

The inquiry at the Royal Courts of Justice in central London was shown a copy of the article which featured a photograph of Mr Putin and the boy and the headline 'Kremlin Paedophile'.

Giving evidence today, Mrs Litvinenko, said: "It was written in 2006 after everybody saw how Putin behaved when he met a little boy in a Kremlin tour group. He went under his t-shirt and kissed his stomach."

Robin Tam QC, counsel to the inquiry, said: "You have no idea if that allegation is true?"

Mrs Litvinenko replied: "No I have no idea."

Litvinenko 'paid £2k per month in consulting fees'

ITV News producer Sandi Sidhu reports from the Alexander Litvinenko inquiry:

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Litvinenko 'wrote an article entitled Kremlin Paedophile'

Marina Litvinenko is telling the inquiry about how Alexander Litvinenko wrote articles for a website called Chechen Press after they moved to London.

She says he wrote one article entitled 'Kremlin Paedophile' which featured a photo of Russian President Vladimir Putin kissing a boy on the stomach.

She says that Boris Berezovsky funded Litvinenko's books at this time.

Litvinenko's widow describes escape to Britain

Marina Litvinenko is describing how she, Alexander and her son fled Russia because her husband feared for their safety.

She told the inquiry that her husband believe he would either be put in prison or killed if they remained in Russia.

Marina described how her husband approached police at Heathrow and said: "I am a former KGB officer and am looking for political asylum".

In May 2001, the family was given the option to change their names. Instead of Litvinenko, they took the name Carter.

  1. Juliet Bremner: ITV News Correspondent

Widow describes Litvinenko's relationship with Berezovsky

The widow of poisoned spy Alexander Litvinenko, Marina, has been describing her late husband's relationship with the Boris Berezovsky. Marina explains how Alexander Litvinenko was assigned to monitor the Russian multimillionaire after he was the target of an assassination attempt.

Court sketch of Marina Litvinenko. Credit: ITV News/ Priscilla Coleman

Following the murder of a popular head of a TV station in 1995 there were suspicions that Berezovsky might be to blame. Litvinenko arrived at Berezovsky's office and found two police officers trying to remove him. He intervened and refused to let the officers take him away.

Marina told inquiry he was "afraid he was going to be taken somewhere and anything could happen to him. They could say he had a heart attack and a then make it easier to blame Boris Berezovsky's for this crime"

After he had prevented the security services from removing him Berezovsky was very grateful: "Boris Berezovsky said many times that Sacha had saved his life and he was very grateful," Marina told the court.

The inquiry has already heard that when Litvinenko claimed asylum in the UK Mr Berezovsky helped to finance him and his family.

  1. Juliet Bremner: ITV News Correspondent

Widow describes Litvinenko's disillusionment with Russia

The widow of Alexander Litvinenko has started to give evidence at the inquiry into his death. Marina started to give her evidence in English but she has an interpreter in case of difficulties.

Marina Litvinenko arrives at the Royal Courts of Justice, London. Credit: Anthony Devlin/PA Wire

She is explaining how she first met her future husband who's she calls "Sacha". They were introduced by a friend in 1993 and married the following year. Their son Anatoly was born before the marriage.

She confirms that relations with his first wife and two children were strained.

Started to work with KGB and in 1994 he moved to the anti-terrorism department which is when they started their relationship.

Litvinenko became involved in the Chechen war and gradually started to change his view about Russia's involvement. He was particularly affected by one 17-year-old boy who he met while working for the Russian security services in the Caucus region.

The teenager told him that everyone in his class had come to fight and Marina said that he then started to think this was an entire people fighting for their lands.

Mrs Litvinenko told the court that he found it "very shocking" and "like the Second World War" and felt that too many people were being killed indiscriminately in Chechnya, including women and a children.

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