A TERRIFIED Roman Abramovich asked if he was going to die after being poisoned by a deadly WWI chemical agent, it was reported.
The billionaire oligarch is said to have gone blind as skin peeled off his hands and face after he joined peace talks between Russia and Ukraine.
The sanctioned Chelsea owner, 55, suffered the alarming symptoms along with two Ukrainian peace negotiators, after reportedly eating poisoned chocolates.
The alleged attack was blamed on hardliners in Moscow who want to sabotage the talks and continue Putin’s bloody war against Ukraine.
The symptoms he suffered were so severe that one stage he feverishly asked scientists examining him “are we dying?”, One person present told the New York Times.
Abramovich has been trying to broker a deal to end the war but it was reported he was poisoned while in Kyiv talking to Ukrainian officials.
A bleary-eyed Abramovich was pictured for the first time since the claim emerged, at a fresh round of peace talks taking place in Istanbul, which began on Tuesday.
According to new analysis, Abramovich was poisoned with World War One chemical warfare agent Chloropicrin or a low dosage of Novichok.
The claim came from investigative journalist Christo Grozev, who led research into the shocking incident and gathered specialists to explain what had happened.
In a new interview, Grozov told the Popular Politics YouTube channel that all the experts had agreed the most likely source of their symptoms was Chloropicrin.
The substance is a chemical warfare agent used in World War One and stockpiled in World War Two.
“All the experts who communicated with them, studied their photographs and carried out personal examinations all said this was not a coincidence, not food poisoning, not an allergy,” he said.
“They also all agreed that the only way to detect the agent was to bring these people to a laboratory, or to send their blood sample to a laboratory with means to detect war agents.”
He was asked: “Which agent did they all agree on?”
Grozev replied: “Сhlorpicrin – this is the agent giving nearly all of the detected symptoms.
“The only minus of that hypothesis was that Chlorpicrin usually emits quite a strong smell, which means it is quite hard to give it without it being noticed.
“But then one of the specialists said there were developments of this agent – without smell.
“Other suggestions even included a low dosage of Novichok, which could have led to these symptoms according to one really knowledgeable expert.”
Novichok was used in the poisoning of GRU double agent Sergei Skripal and is daughter Yulia at his home in Salisbury, England.
It comes as …
Grozev works for British investigators Bellingcat and independent Russian media platforms.
He said he had been called in around 3 March to examine the case because he had knowledge of previous poisonings.
It comes after Vladimir Putin reportedly told Abramovich he would “thrash” Ukraine when the oligarch tried to broker a peace deal.
The Chelsea owner reportedly flew to Moscow to meet the Russian tyrant but was rebuffed with the chilling warning to Kyiv.
He flew to Moscow last week to present Putin with a handwritten note from Ukraine’s president Volodymyr Zelensky, The Times reports.
The note outlined the terms Ukraine would accept to end the war but Putin was unmoved.
“Tell him I will thrash them,” was the Kremlin strongman’s response to the Ukrainian president.