Russia & FSU

Ukraine’s top spy a ‘legitimate target’ – FSB chief

Anyone committing crimes against Russia is a marked man, security service chief Aleksandr Bortnikov has saidUkraine’s top spy a ‘legitimate target’ – FSB chief

Ukraine’s top spy a ‘legitimate target’ – FSB chief

FILE PHOTO: The Ukrainian military intelligence chief, Kirill Budanov ©  Global Look Press / Ruslan Kaniuka

Ukraine’s military intelligence chief, Kirill Budanov, should be considered a valid target for Russian troops, the head of the Federal Security Service (FSB), Aleksandr Bortnikov, told journalists on Tuesday. The same principle should be applied to anyone “committing crimes” against Russia, the official added.

A Moscow court ordered Budanov’s arrest on terrorism charges in December 2023, after Kiev’s top spy was accused of masterminding over 100 “terrorist attacks” involving drones targeting Russian civilian infrastructure.

The head of the Ukrainian military intelligence (GUR) has openly advocated attacks on Russian soil, including territory that Kiev recognizes as being under Moscow’s sovereignty. Budanov initially touted the assaults as “partisan activities,” but later acknowledged the responsibility of the Ukrainian state.

“Those committing crimes against Russia and Russian citizens are a legitimate target,” Bortnikov said when asked about Budanov and other high-ranking Ukrainian intelligence officials. When pressed by journalists on why Russia has not yet acted on those targets, the FSB chief replied that this possibility “is still ahead.”


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