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Ukraine’s Security Service uncovers 11 Russian spy networks in 2024, agency’s chief says

The Head of Ukraine’s Security Service, Vasyl Maliuk, emphasized his agency’s focus on employing preemptive strategies and innovative counterintelligence methods to dismantle entire spy networks.
SBU Crimean Bridge Maliuk Malyuk
The Head of the Security Service of Ukraine, Vasyl Maliuk during the presentation of the commemorative stamp dedicated to Ukraine’s Security Service. Photo: SBU/Telegram
Ukraine’s Security Service uncovers 11 Russian spy networks in 2024, agency’s chief says

The Security Service of Ukraine works intensely to counteract Russian intelligence and subversive activities and has already exposed 11 spy networks since the beginning of 2024, Vasyl Maliuk, the head of the agency, said during a speech at the Congress of Local and Regional Councils under the President of Ukraine.

This year, the Security Service arrested dozens of Russian collaborators and agents who spied inside the Ukrainian Army near the Ukraine-Russian border and spread propaganda in pro-Russian churches across the country.

“Currently, the SBU effectively employs preemptive strategies, primarily through systematic and innovative counterintelligence methods. Our focus is not merely on apprehending individual traitors but on dismantling entire networks.

In 2023, the SBU exposed a total of 47 espionage networks, resulting in the apprehension of all involved individuals. Moreover, since the beginning of this year, we have already uncovered an additional 11 networks,” remarked Malyiuk.

By employing the new approach, the agency continues countering enemy infiltration into critical infrastructure facilities, including their prevention into Ukraine’s cyberspace. It also blocks attempts to gather intelligence on the routes of international aid movement and locations of defense industry enterprises.

For instance, recently, the Security Service of Ukraine apprehended an agent of Russian intelligence in Dnipro who was photographing and videotaping the local thermal power plant and preparing hostile missile strikes, a former police officer in Zaporizhzhia who was monitoring defense industry facilities, as well as several employees of Ukrzaliznytsia who provided valuable information on the logistics of weapon and munitions transportation to Russians.

We have a clear task from President Volodymyr Zelenskyy: to prevent any challenges, and we are carrying it out to protect the lives of citizens and national security,” emphasized Maliuk.

He also announced that since January 2024, the Security Service of Ukraine has initiated 352 criminal proceedings for state treason, 807 for collaborationist activities, 108 for aiding the aggressor state, and 66 for disclosing information about the Armed Forces of Ukraine to the enemy.

In particular, Maliuk mentioned a trial in which a Russian agent, arrested by the agency, was sentenced to life imprisonment for adjusting a missile strike on the center of Kramatorsk in June 2023.

According to him, one of the preventive measures for identifying enemy agents is the systematic performance of counterterrorist and counter-sabotage operations.

Previously, based on the evidence provided by the Security Service of Ukraine, another collaborator who assisted Russians during the battles for Kyiv received a substantial prison sentence.

In 2022, disguised in a monk’s robe, he approached the positions of Russian troops during the occupation of Andriivka village in Buchanskyi district. There, he pledged his support to them in their war against Ukraine. Initially, he housed an occupation unit in his own residence, later providing the invaders with food supplies and identifying the homes of fellow villagers who were subsequently looted.

Additionally, the collaborator blessed columns of Russian armored vehicles moving towards the front lines. However, in truth, he had no genuine connection to the religious community.

The monk enjoyed privileges, allowing him unrestricted movement within the community and access to the occupiers’ headquarters. Following the liberation of the district, he remained in the village, hoping to wait out the situation in the comfort of his own house.

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