Long before the annexation of the Crimean peninsula, Russian special services used to undermine the capabilities of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), Minister for Veterans Affairs Yulia Laputina, who since 1994 served at the Alpha antiterrorist center, said in an exclusive interview with Interfax-Ukraine.
According to her, this work became especially active after 2008. In particular, Laputina said, "one of the unspoken conditions of the Kharkiv agreements was the reduction of units in the structure of the Ukrainian counterintelligence, which counteracted the intelligence and subversive activities of the special services of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, as well as the dismissal of their leaders, the transfer of personnel to positions wherever they had the opportunity to make certain decisions."
"People who held leadership positions began to bring us under the auspices of cooperation with the 'fraternal' Russian special services to meetings and to instructor units, respectively, to training grounds for FSB officers," the minister also said, noting that "among them was a well-known employee of Russian special services Igor Yegorov, who is involved in the case of the SBU General Valeriy Shaitanov."
"I have repeatedly declared to the leadership of the SBU that this should not be done. Moreover, such international cooperation of any special service is regulated by certain procedures. Bypassing all these procedures, some leaders in the SBU lobbied for the arrival of the Russian special services," Laputina noted.
"I remember one very illustrative competition when our snipers defeated the Russians. The head of the FSB, presenting the award to our employee, said: 'You taught us a lot, thank you.' And already in the changing room, the Russian team of snipers told ours literally: there won't be your unit soon," she said.
According to the minister, "then no one wanted to believe, but new trends were not long in coming." "The Alpha leadership really began to limit the number of training of Ukrainian fighters, shooting, ammunition. It became obvious to the enemy even then that through special forces it was possible to influence the security policy in the structure of the Ukrainian special service," the Minister for Veterans Affairs emphasized.
According to Laputina, the definite point for her was October 2013, before the Maidan. "Walking along the corridor of 33 Volodymyrska Street, I met one of the generals of the SBU. In a conversation with colleagues, he said: "I told you that this country has never existed and won't exist," she said.
Laputina expressed confidence that "many of those who in the 2000s worked in the area of intelligence and counteraction to the Russian special services can say that then we would like more attention and reaction from the leadership of the SBU and the state to these issues, to all analytics and forecasts that we provided, because we directly encountered the cynical 'face' of representatives of the Russian special services."