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From Russian новичо́к (novičók, newbie, newcomer).


novichok (countable and uncountable, plural novichoks)

  1. Any of a group of deadly organophosphate nerve agents developed by the Soviet Union in the 1970s and 1980s to evade restrictions on chemical weapons.
    • 1995, Amy E. Smithson, Chemical Weapons Disarmament in Russia: Problems and Prospects, p. 60:
      Those still fixated on the problem and not the solution will argue that the United States should take no action on the CWC until Russia “comes clean” about the novichok program under the Memorandum of Understanding.
    • 2013, Mahdi Balali-Mood, Mohammad Abdollahi (eds.), Basic and Clinical Toxicology of Organophosphorus Compounds, p. 14:
      Novichoks are allegedly the deadliest NAs ever produced and are potentially five to eight times more potent than VX.
    • 2018, Ian Sample, The Guardian, 13 March:
      Theresa May has identified the nerve agent used in the attack on Sergei and Yulia Skripal in Salisbury as a novichok.