Image default

Kremlin believes Western secret services are complicit

After the terrorist attack near Moscow, the Kremlin suspects the masterminds are not only in Ukraine, but also in Western secret services. The fact that Islamists have claimed responsibility for the crime is not a contradiction.

By Jürgen Buch, ARD Moscow

The Russian leadership is increasingly committed to the claim that Ukraine was responsible for the terrorist attack in a concert hall near Moscow last Friday. The secretary of the Russian Security Council, Nikolai Patrushev, shouted this to a journalist in the hallway before a meeting. He asked: “Who is to blame, IS or Ukraine?” Patrushev's answer: “Ukraine.”

The head of the domestic intelligence service FSB, Alexander Bortnikov, went into more detail after the meeting. “The bandits planned to flee abroad, namely to the territory of Ukraine,” he said. According to “our preliminary operational information,” they were waiting for them there. “We are currently working intensively to identify all those accomplices in this massacre, both on the territory of our country and abroad. Also with partner intelligence services from friendly countries.” He also said that it could be assumed that the secret services of the USA and Great Britain were partly responsible for the terrorist act.

Ukraine denies all allegations. Mykhailo Podolyak, adviser to the Ukrainian president, called Patrushev's and Bortnikov's claims lies – and they are already chronic. Russian President Vladimir Putin is obsessed with the idea of ​​pursuing the alleged “Ukrainian trail.”

Kremlin sees Ukraine's connection to Islamism

The terrorist militia “Islamic State” (IS) claimed responsibility for the attack last Friday. For Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov, it is no contradiction that Islamist terrorists are allegedly involved with the Ukrainian leadership – President Volodymyr Zelensky is Jewish. “Well, there stands a unique Jew. A Jew who expresses his sympathy and inclination towards the nationalist spirit that permeated the leadership of the Kiev regime,” Peskov claims. “You can say that absolutely clearly if you rely on facts and explanations.”

The fact is: Zelensky was freely and democratically elected in 2019. In the same year, right-wing Ukrainian parties clearly failed to pass the five percent threshold in the parliamentary elections.

Meanwhile, Russian authorities have arrested another man whom they accuse of being linked to the terrorist attack at a concert hall last Friday. He is said to have rented an apartment to the alleged perpetrators in which they are said to have held conspiratorial meetings. The man of Kyrgyz origin denies having any knowledge of the terrorist plans.

Debate about capital punishment in Russia

The terrorist attack has sparked a debate in Russian politics about lifting the moratorium on the death penalty for terrorist crimes. Among other things, the chairman of the right-wing Liberal Democratic Party, Leonid Slutzkij, spoke out in favor of it. The head of the “Fair Russia” party, Sergei Mironov, proposed a referendum on the return of the death penalty.

State Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said a referendum was unnecessary. “The death penalty has never been abolished in our constitution and legislation,” he said. There is a decision by the Constitutional Court to suspend this sentence. “You don't need referendums; a new decision from this court is sufficient. At that time, it had suspended the death penalty, in accordance with the Council of Europe's regulations, but we left.” The Senator for Krasnoyarsk, Andrei Klishas, ​​believes that a constitutional change is necessary.

The Russian Constitutional Court has not yet commented on the debate. According to the independent Internet portal “Mediazona”, 143 cases allegedly related to terrorism were prosecuted in Russia last year. Before 2018, there were fewer than 20 cases of this type every year.

Jürgen Buch, ARD Moscow, tagesschau, March 26, 2024 4:46 p.m

Related posts

Leave a Comment

* By using this form you agree with the storage and handling of your data by this website.