Body Of Top Russian GRU Spy Found After A “Swimming Accident”
September 1, 2010: Andrew Osborn / The London Telegraph – August 31, 2010
The body of one of Russia’s top spies has washed up on the Turkish coast after he disappeared close to a sensitive Russian naval facility in neighbouring Syria.
Major-General Yuri Ivanov, 52, was the deputy head of Russia’s foreign military intelligence arm known as GRU which is thought to operate the biggest network of foreign spies out of all of Russia’s clandestine intelligence services.
His badly decomposed body was found washed up on the Turkish coast by local fishermen earlier this month after he disappeared in the Syrian coastal resort of Latakia further south. The Russian army’s in-house newspaper, Red Star, did not report his death until last Saturday when he was quietly buried in Moscow.
The circumstances of his death are reminiscent of a John Le Carre novel and have therefore fuelled theories that he may have been murdered in Syria and his body then thrown into the Mediterranean where it drifted for days.
According to the Kremlin, he was on holiday in Syria and died in a tragic swimming accident. However, other reports have suggested he was on official business and the location where he is reported to have disappeared was only about fifty miles from a strategically vital Russian naval facility in the Syrian port of Tartus which is being expanded and upgraded to service and refuel ships from Russia’s Black Sea Fleet.
The facility is Russia’s only foothold in the Mediterranean Sea, and Mossad, Israel’s national intelligence agency, is know to be concerned that Moscow will use the upgraded facility as a base for spy ships and electronic espionage directed at the Middle East. The port is also close to the Turkish port of Ceyhan, a terminal for the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan oil pipeline which is seen as a lifeline for Georgia, against whom Russia fought a short war in 2008.
The Tonka Report Editor’s Note: People in the “intelligence community” are dropping like flies around the world. Are they whistleblowers? – SJH
Link to original article below…
Written by Steven John Hibbs
September 1, 2010 at 9:10 pm