Russian President Vladimir Putin removed approximately 150 FSB intelligence officers, including sending some to prison, over failures during the nation’s invasion of Ukraine, according to a new report.
“All of those ousted were employees of the Fifth Service, a division set up in 1998 when Putin was director of the FSB to carry out operations in the countries of the former Soviet Union with the aim of keeping them within Russia’s orbit,” according to The Times.
— Andy Vermaut (@AndyVermaut) April 12, 2022
“I can say that although a significant number of them have not been arrested they will no longer work for the FSB,” Christo Grozev told a YouTube channel about the situation, according to the Washington Examiner.
“The official Russian explanation for his initial arrest last month was a charge of embezzlement,” the report added.
— Fat Cat 🌐 (@FATCAed) April 12, 2022
The new report comes as NATO estimated that as many as 40,000 Russian armed forces personnel have been killed, injured, or are missing, with up to 15,000 of the number killed in battle.
The dire statistics may be leading Putin to make a drastic choice in order to show some level of blame-shifting or political victory despite Ukraine’s strong resistance and sanctions from western nations.