Ukraine Foils Plot To Assassinate Zelensky, Arrests 2 Security Officials

Ukraine Foils Plot To Assassinate Zelensky, Arrests 2 Security Officials

The Ukrainian State Security Service (SBU) said two government protection unit colonels have been arrested for allegedly planning to assassinate President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The officials are also accused of leaking classified information to Russia.

The SBU said on Tuesday that the officials were apprehended after it exposed a network of agents belonging to Russia’s State Security Service (FSB).

The SBU said it had “foiled” the “actively developing plans” to assassinate Zelensky.

“One of the tasks of the FSB’s agent network was to find perpetrators among the military close to the President’s security who could take the Head of State hostage and then kill him,” the SBU said.

The Ukrainian security agency said the assassination plot also targeted other senior officials, including the head of the SBU, Vasyl Maliuk, and the head of the Defence Intelligence of Ukraine, Kyrylo Budanov.

Several attempts are said to have been made on the life of the Ukrainian president since the beginning of the full-scale invasion of the country by Russia in February 2022.

In August 2023, a woman from the southern Ukrainian region of Mykolaiv was equally arrested over a a plot to assassinate Zelensky.

The suspect was accused of gathering intelligence about Zelensky’s planned visit to Mykolaiv in order to plan a Russian airstrike to kill him.

The SBU said it caught the woman “red-handed” as she tried “to pass intelligence to the invaders.”

Also in April, a Polish man was accused of assisting another alleged Russian assassination plot against Zelensky.

He was charged with “readiness to act for foreign intelligence against the Republic of Poland,” an offense which carries up to eight years in prison.

Prosecutors said the man agreed to provide information to Russian spies about security at Rzeszów-Jasionka airport, in southeastern Poland near the border with Ukraine, which Zelensky is known to use when leaving on foreign trips.

The plot was uncovered by Ukrainian authorities and the man was later detained and charged in Poland.

The Ukrainian leader has also experienced a number of close shaves during his many visits to the front lines and cities under Russian bombardment.

A Russian missile exploded close to a convoy carrying Zelensky and Greek Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis during a visit to the coastal city of Odesa in March.

The group felt the impact of the strike, which landed around 500 meters away from the convoy, and saw a “mushroom cloud” of smoke.

Five people were killed in the strike, although neither Zelensky nor Mitsotakis were injured.

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