Putin’s secret agents ‘refuse to work in Russian-occupied Ukraine even when offered eight times their normal salary’
- Russian spies are refusing to move to occupied parts of Ukraine, FSB insider says
- Even salaries six or eight times the usual amount cannot entice reluctant agents
- Some are hiding behind medical certificates signed by compliant doctors
- Retirees are now being called on, but just three of 200 ‘said they would consider’
Vladimir Putin‘s secret services agents are refusing to work in Russian-occupied areas of Ukraine, an FSB ‘insider’ has claimed.
Even salaries six to eight times higher than usual are failing to persuade counter-intelligence officers to move to conquered areas, the alleged source said.
Putin urgently needs both regular and military intelligence operatives to enforce his rule in the two ‘people’s republics’ in eastern Ukraine, Donetsk and Luhansk as well as Kherson, Zaporizhzhia and Kharkiv.
But FSB agents are avoiding the postings, obtaining medical certificates from complaint doctors for themselves or family members, reports Telegram forum ‘We Can Explain’.
Vladimir Putin is pictured with FSB director and close ally Alexander Bortnikov (front right)
A close ally of Putin, Bortnikov has reportedly failed to entice spies to Russian-held Ukraine
The lack of loyalty to Putin from the rank and file intelligence operatives mirrors a reluctance from troops to be posted to the war zone, which has resulted in the Kremlin desperately recruiting untrained prisoners and ‘Dad’s Army’ civilians for frontline deployment.
Putin’s ‘siloviki’ secret services chiefs are even trying to woo back retired or fired agents for war zone roles.
But there is little or no interest, an FSB source told the Telegram channel.
They said: ‘We called 200 [retired] people and only three said they would think about it.
‘This is despite the promises of huge payments and benefits.’
Officers have been offered around £5,000 a month to service in occupied zones, it is claimed.
This is up to eight times their normal pay, and far more than payments to soldiers fighting in the war.
‘Personnel departments are actively calling former employees, even those dismissed on discrediting grounds,’ stated the report.
Counterintelligence officials are thought to have been offered six or eight times normal pay
Some officers report that they are ‘exhausted’ by almost six months of intensive duties with holidays cancelled during the war.
Many are reportedly seeking to quit the service.
The FSB – Russia’s Federal Security Service and successor to the KGB – was once led by Putin.
Its current head is his close ally Alexander Bortnikov.
The report says there had been open dissent in the ranks, with some FSB officers sent to remote postings in eastern Siberia as demonstrative punishments intended to warn others to toe the line.
‘The shortage of personnel in the special service is also confirmed by a draft decree submitted by the FSB itself,’ the forum reported.
‘This will allow the signing of contracts with [recruits] with only secondary education, not higher, as was required before, and with those who do not have experience of military service.’
Firefighters stand atop wreckage in Bakhmut in eastern Ukraine, where fighting continues
A man pulls bricks from a crater by his home in Kramatorsk near Donetsk yesterday afternoon