Russian Official so Sure of Ukraine Win, He Picked New Apartment: WaPo

Date:

  • The Washington Post has received Russian communications intercepted by Ukraine and other countries.
  • Among them is a senior officer who seems to choose the Kiev apartment he wanted before the invasion began.
  • Russia was so confident of a quick victory that it chose Ukrainian accommodation for its staff, officials said.

A top Russian security official appeared to have picked the Kiev apartment he wanted to live in before the invasion of Ukraine began because he was so confident of a quick Russian victory, The Washington Post reported.

Igor Kovalenko, who was identified by Ukraine as a senior officer of the Russian security service’s FSB, spoke to a subordinate on Feb. 18 in an exchange that suggested he had sought out an apartment in Ukraine’s capital, according to intercepted Russian communications seen by Na.

The Russian invasion began on February 24, six days after the talk.

Russia had expected a quick victory that took Kiev and installed a new government, but was met with unexpected fervent Ukrainian resistance. Russia withdrew from Kiev in April and has since concentrated on the east and south of the country.

The Post reported that the apartment was located in “the leafy Obolon neighborhood of Kiev, overlooking the Dnieper River.”

In the intercepted communications, Kovalenko also identified an apartment where an FSB informant already lived, and asked for the informant’s address and contact information, The Post reported. The subordinate then gave him the details, The Post reported.

The messages that The Post saw were intercepted by the security services of Ukraine and other countries, the newspaper said.

Kovalenko treated Ukraine for years in his FSB role, The Post reported. He is a senior officer in the FSB’s Ninth Directorate of the Department of Operational Information, which is trying to keep Ukraine close to Russia. He worked with Ukrainians who were secretly paid by Russia, according to The Post.

Ukrainian authorities told The Post that Ukraine detained and questioned the unidentified informant when it intercepted Kovalenko’s communications.

Ukrainian officials told The Post that the informant admitted that in the days before the invasion, the FSB told him to leave his apartment — to pack his things, leave Kiev and leave his keys so he would stay safe while the invasion began .

The Ukrainian security service then kept an eye on the apartment after Ukraine intercepted the communications, but Kovalenko, like other FSB officials, did not show up, Ukrainian officials told The Post.

It is not clear what happened to the informant, who did not name Ukraine.

The Post said Kovalenko has not responded to his requests for comment.

Kovalenko went back to Russia at some point earlier in the invasion, then said he would go back to Ukraine in late May, The Post reported. Ukrainian officials told The Post they are no longer sure where he is.

Kovalenko’s confidence in choosing an apartment was shared by the FSB, according to The Post report.

Russia told several informants to leave their homes in Ukraine but to leave their keys, The Post reported. Ukrainian and Western officials told The Post that Russian officials were seeking housing for the personnel they wanted to bring to the country, expecting an easy victory.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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