October 30, 2010


Georgia arrests 20 Russian spies

Publication time: 29 October 2010, 17:36

Georgian police detained 20 persons on suspicion of spying for Russia. According to Georgian special services, the detainees are suspected of creating a spy network on the territory of Georgia and delivering secret information to Russia, Reuters reports.
"I do not comment on this issue", said to the Russian RIA Novosti the head of information aand analytical department of the MIA of Georgia, Utiashvili.
Georgian officials previously said that they do not exclude a possibility of espionage for Russia on their territory, but they were able to control it. The announcement came in response to the warning by a former British intelligence chief, Jerry Warner, that after failures in the US and Europe, Moscow would send its intelligence agents to Georgia and Ukraine.
"Espionage activity of Russia in Georgia is not excluded. But even if there is some intelligence date, we have information about it", said one of the leaders of the ruling party of Georgia, the United National Movement, Peter Tsiskarishvili.
Spy scandals between Russia and Georgia are frequent. Thus, this March, a trial over an entire group of people accused of spying for Georgia was organized in Russia. Among them were two officers of the Russian army and a senior "Georgian intelligence officer", as Russian authorities claimed.
Senior army intelligence officer, Lt. Col. Marlene Bogdanov, and assistant chief of the military hospital, Lt. Khvichia Imerlishvili, were recruited by Georgian intelligence in 2007.
Their tasks were supposedly "to collect information on the deployment of Russian troops in the North Caucasus Military District and South Ossetia, as well as local whereabouts of the South Ossetian president Eduard Kokoity in Vladikavkaz, and chose candidates for recruitment".
However, according to Russian authorities, they give Georgia more meaningful information. In particular, Bogdanov has allegedly given a list of Russian intelligence agents in Georgia and a list of subscribers of special communication of border troops of the Russian Federation, and a report of the Chief of the Russian Army Intelligence on the military situation in the south-west strategic direction.
Department of Monitoring
Kavkaz Center