Woman detained in alleged assassination plot against Zelensky

August 7, 2023

A woman accused of being a spy was detained Monday on allegations she smuggled coordinates to Russian forces for an airstrike assassination attempt against Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.

The woman, who Ukraine’s intelligence service SBU said was caught “red handed” while attempting to pass on intel to Russia, faces up to 12 years in prison.

She allegedly attempted to establish Zelensky’s itinerary while he visited the region of Mykolaiv, a port city on the Black Sea. Russians planned on using this information to launch a “massive air strike” in the area, according to Ukrainian authorities. 

In June, Zelensky said his bodyguards are responsible for thinking of how to prevent any such attempt on his life, adding that “this is their task. I don’t think about it.”

Zelensky adviser Mikhailo Podolyak has disclosed that there there had been at least a dozen serious assassination attempts on the Ukrainian President by Russian sabotage and intelligence teams, including by Chechens and Wagner mercenaries.

Zelensky’s safety has been an issue since Russia’s initial invasion of Ukraine in February 2022. From the first days of the war, the Ukrainian President has brazenly walked along the the streets of Kyiv in defiance of Russian air strikes.

In the first days of the war, Zelensky refused a U.S. offer to evacuate him from the war zone, famously saying, “I need ammunition, not a ride.”

PHOTO: Zelensky in Kyiv April 2022

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