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Russian spy ring sought to sabotage arms deliveries to Ukraine: Polish interior minister

16.03.2023 14:30
Poland has dismantled a Russian espionage network active in the country and detained nine people who had been preparing acts of sabotage against deliveries of weapons to war-torn Ukraine, the Polish interior minister said on Thursday. 
Polands Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński.
Poland's Interior Minister Mariusz Kamiński.PAP/Piotr Nowak

Mariusz Kamiński made the announcement at a news conference in Warsaw, Polish state news agency PAP reported.

He confirmed media reports, previously also confirmed by Deputy Prime Minister Mariusz Błaszczak, that Poland's Internal Security Agency (ABW) had broken up a Russian espionage ring operating in Poland.

'Nine people suspected of collaborating with Russian secret services

Kamiński told reporters: "In recent days, the Internal Security Agency has detained nine people suspected of collaborating with the Russian secret services. The suspects conducted intelligence activities against Poland and prepared acts of sabotage at the request of Russian intelligence."

Kamiński added that the suspects were foreigners from countries to the east of Poland.

The interior minister also said that six of the people detained had been charged with “espionage for Russia and participation in an organised criminal group.”

Meanwhile, prosecution proceedings against three people detained on Wednesday were ongoing, he added.

Russian spy group ‘aimed to sabotage weapons deliveries to Ukraine’ 

Kamiński said that, according to the evidence gathered, the group had been monitoring rail routes to Ukraine, including collecting information about weapons deliveries to Kyiv. 

He added: “The suspects were also preparing acts of subversion, designed to sabotage the supply of equipment, weapons and assistance to Ukraine.”

The interior minister also revealed that ABW officers "secured cameras, electronic equipment, as well as GPS transmitters that were to be mounted on transports with help for Ukraine."

In addition, the group had been ordered by their handlers to conduct “propaganda activities to destabilise relations between Poland and Ukraine,” and they had been paid for their work, Kamiński told reporters.  

Thursday's announcement came as Russia’s war on Ukraine continued for the 386th day

Poland has been a steadfast ally of Ukraine and a hub for deliveries of weaponry to the Ukrainian armed forces, news outlets noted.


Source: IAR, PAP, Polsat News

Click on the audio player above to listen to a report by Radio Poland's Michał Owczarek.