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SBU detains suspected spy accused of aiding Russian strikes on Kharkiv

by Dinara Khalilova February 21, 2024 3:59 PM 2 min read
Photo for illustrative purposes. Kharkiv Railway Station is pictured during a snowfall in winter, Kharkiv, northeastern Ukraine, on Dec. 12, 2023. (Vyacheslav Madiyevskyy / Ukrinform/Future Publishing via Getty Images)
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The Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) detained a Kharkiv resident who was allegedly aiding Russian attacks on the city's civilian infrastructure, including a Jan. 23 strike that injured nine people, the SBU's press service reported on Feb. 21.

Russia fired S-300 and Kh-22 missiles at Kharkiv late on Jan. 23, damaging houses, an educational institution, and a post office, according to the SBU. This was the third strike against Kharkiv on that day.

The suspected informant is a 34-year-old woman from Kharkiv whom Russia recruited early this year, the SBU wrote.

She allegedly provided Russia with information on "the most densely populated areas of the city" and geolocations of buildings that she thought could be used by Ukrainian forces.

The suspect also reportedly tracked the presence and secretly recorded the movement of Ukrainian military units toward the front line.

The woman then remotely transmitted all obtained information to a handler of Russian intelligence services in exchange for a monetary award, according to the SBU.

The Kharkiv resident was charged with high treason committed under martial law. If convicted, she may face life imprisonment.

As of Feb. 21, Ukraine has launched 16,445 criminal cases over crimes against national security, including 3,106 over high treason, according to the Prosecutor General’s Office.

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