Deputy Defense Intelligence Chief Vadym Skybytskyi told German publication Welt in an interview on May 24 that Wagner mercenary group founder Yevgeny Prigozhin was one of the Ukrainian Intelligence Directorate's main targets.
"We are trying to kill him," Skybytskyi responded when Welt asked what was the Ukrainian Intelligence Directorate's relationship with Prigozhin.
"Our priority is to destroy the unit commander who orders his men to attack," Skybytskyi added.
The question is likely in reference to leaked U.S. intelligence documents which suggested that Prigozhin has been in contact "several times" with Ukrainian intelligence, allegedly offering to give Russian troop locations to Ukraine in exchange for Ukrainian forces withdrawing from the area around Bakhmut.
Wagner mercenaries have served as the primary shock troops in Russia's attempts to expand its control over Donetsk Oblast in eastern Ukraine.
However, Skybytskyi went on to say that Russian dictator Vladimir Putin remains the Intelligence Directorate's main target.
"He notices that we are getting closer to him, but maybe he is also afraid of being killed by his own people," Skybytskyi added.