UK Claims That Moscow Plans To Install Pro-Russian Leader In Kiev
LONDON (UrduPoint News / Sputnik - 23rd January, 2022) The United Kingdom has accused Russia of allegedly trying to install a "pro-Russian leader" in Ukraine and of maintaining links with certain former Ukrainian politicians.
"We have information that indicates the Russian Government is looking to install a pro-Russian leader in Kyiv as it considers whether to invade and occupy Ukraine. The former Ukrainian MP Yevhen Murayev is being considered as a potential candidate," the British Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office said in a Saturday statement.
The release also claimed that Russian intelligence services are "involved in the planning for an attack on Ukraine" and are maintaining contact with numerous former Ukrainian politicians including Ukraine's ex-Prime Minister Mykola Azarov.
No evidence was provided to support any of the claims.
"The information being released today shines a light on the extent of Russian activity designed to subvert Ukraine, and is an insight into Kremlin thinking," British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss said as quoted in the release. She called on Russia to de-escalate and warned of "severe costs."
Russian foreign ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said earlier on Saturday that Moscow expected military and informational provocations from the West and Ukraine on the eve of the Olympic Games in Beijing.