Ukraine busts up Russia’s Zelenskyy assassination plot in massive ‘failure’ of Putin’s spies

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Ukrainian authorities have arrested two colonels from the Ukrainian forces who had allegedly collaborated with Russians to plot the assassination of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy. 

“The attempt was planned under the supervision of employees of the 5th department of the FSB as a gift to Vladimir Putin for the inauguration,” Ukrainian Secret Service SBU said in a post on Telegram after detaining two “traitor” colonels. 

“The enemy was actively developing plans to eliminate President Volodymyr Zelensky,” the SBU added. “One of the tasks of the FSB intelligence network was to search for executors among the military close to the protection of the President, who could take the Head of State hostage and later kill him.”

Zelenskyy in March told Fox News chief political anchor and executive editor of “Special Report” Bret Baier that he had avoided five attempts on his life up until that point, describing such plots as “not interesting for me now.” 

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Colonel Andrei Gun and Colonel Derkach (no first name given) allegedly agreed to help set up the kidnapping of Zelenskyy, with plans to later assassinate him. The colonels agreed to betray their country for $50,000, which Russian Federal Security Service (FSB) handlers teased could increase to $80,000.

Zelenskyy Assassination plot

Ukrainian secret services swoop on a “network of agents” from the Russian FSB detaining two colonels who were “preparing to assassinate Volodymyr Zelensky as a gift to Vladimir Putin for his inauguration.” (East2West)

Prior to their arrest, the colonels spied on Zelenskyy and provided information to FSB on the presidential guard, as well as Zelenskyy’s movements. Ukraine’s SBU managed to catch one of the colonels as he traveled out to another region of Ukraine allegedly to collect weapons for the operation. 

Audio released by Ukrainian intelligence caught an exchange between the colonels and their handlers, who wanted to complete the assassination as an “inauguration gift” for Russian President Vladimir Putin after his latest election. Western leaders from the United States and the European Union did not attend Putin’s 6th inauguration, held on Tuesday, Voice of America reported

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In the audio clip, the conspirators discuss weapons – such as a drone, mines, RPG rockets and anti-tank rockets – which the colonels claimed to have hidden away near the Odesa highway. The conversation indicated that the FSB would look to hit their target with two missile strikes, during which the colonels would use their weapons to “finish the things.”

Russian Intelligence network

FSB director Alexander Bortnikov, right, with Russian President Vladimir Putin. (East2West)

“The subjects are two cars. One car with guards and the second with (muted),” the FSB handler said, according to a transcript provided by news agency East2West. “I’m going to give you the location for observation.”

The handler described Zelenskyy, “the boss,” as traveling in an armored Jeep, with a second car carrying guards in a “convoy.” The FSB had assured the colonels they would have 20 to 30 minutes to escape before dealing with any authorities. 

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“After that, we cover up your trace, the fact that there was a drone strike, we cover it up with a missile strike,” the agent said. “So we have like a sandwich: Missile, drone, missile.” 

SBU GRU Ukraine

Head of the Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Malyuk attends the “Ukraine. Year 2024” forum in Kyiv. The forum brought together the top Ukrainian authorities to present their plans. (Aleksandr Gusev/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

The plot would also have taken out SBU chief Vasyl Malyuk and the head of the Ukrainian Intelligence agency GRU.

Malyuk told reporters that “a limited number of people knew about” the operation to capture the colonels, which he “personally” handled. 

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“The terrorist attack, which was supposed to be a gift to Putin before the inauguration, was actually a failure of the Russian special services,” Malyuk insisted. “But we must not forget – the enemy is strong and experienced, he cannot be underestimated.”

“We will continue to work ahead of time, so that every traitor receives the well-deserved court sentence,” Malyuk added. 



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