Kremlin agent Konstantin Kudryavtsev, suspected of being behind the attempted attack on Vladimir Putin’s political opponent Alexei Navalny, has disappeared
Image: via REUTERS)
According to media reports, an FSB agent linked to a hit squad ordered to kill a top enemy of Vladimir Putin has disappeared and may have been murdered.
Journalists who exposed the assassination attempt on Alexei Navalny by sprinkling Novichok on his underwear now fear for the life of their key source.
FSB agent Konstantin Kudryavtsev, in his early 40s, was tricked into revealing full details of the sinister plot in a phone call to Navalny, who posed as a senior Russian security official.
Leading investigative journalist Christo Grozev said Putin was “humiliated” by Kudryavtsev’s confession to Navalny and may have been assassinated by Russian authorities for this reason.
“I am very personally concerned about the fate of Kudryavtsev,” he said on the Popular Politics channel, which is linked to Navalny, who is now being jailed on convictions widely believed to be false.
“He’s nowhere to be found.
“All his relatives switched phones.
“We can’t track him through them either. To be honest, I really hope he’s alive…”
He warned, “Possibly something radical happened to him that caused him to be completely eliminated.
“It is possible that Putin’s personal grudges played out [a role] here.
“I felt it after seeing Kudryavtsev’s confession and it’s entirely possible that he was eliminated.”
Putin was shown on national television mocking claims that the FSB tried to kill Navalny.
“Of course, the secret services have to keep an eye on him,” Putin said.
“But that doesn’t mean he needs to be poisoned – who needs him?
“If they really wanted to, they probably would have finished the job.”
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It appears that Putin was not informed of Kudryavtsev’s accidental confession as he attempted to deny any role for the FSB, Grozev said.
“It was a personal humiliation for the President,” he said.
“By that time it was known that Kudryavtsev gave an interview in which he denied [the words of] the president.”
Four of the eight-man killer team were tracked down after being “scattered” across Russia on obscure administrative jobs.
But there is no sign of Kudryavtsev, the man whose testimony exposed the FSB conspiracy and proved Putin’s duplicity, and whose job it was to clean up.
“We continue to search for Kudryavtsev,” Grozev said.
Either he has been completely banished from sight “or he is dead”.
He said, “We want to know.”
Navalny, considered Putin’s most charismatic and effective political opponent, was almost killed by Novichok after falling seriously ill on a flight from Tomsk to Moscow on August 20, 2020.
The plane made an emergency landing in Omsk, where he was initially treated before Putin allowed him to travel to Germany for treatment.
Instagram account @navalny/AFP v)
Navalny posed as an official working for senior Putin security apparatchik Nikolai Patrushev, and Kudryavtsev told him the FSB poisoned his underpants to target his groin.
“If it [the plane] flew a bit longer and they wouldn’t have landed it kind of abruptly and so on, maybe things would have turned out differently,” said Kudryavtsev, implying that the pilot’s quick thinking saved Navalny’s life after he was poisoned with the Soviet-era radioactive substance had been .
He would have died “if it wasn’t for the rapid deployment of the paramedics, the paramedics on the runway and so on.”
The FSB official said: “I was told to work exactly with the underpants, on the inside.”
His task was to get the Navalny clothes from doctors and police officers in Omsk and remove important evidence.