Exclusive // Russian wreckers in Montenegro prepared in 2014 a subversive group in Moldova
The Russians who acted in the fall of 2016 in Montenegro to overthrow the government in Podgorica, planning, inclusively, the assassination of Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, were not the first stunt of its kind: it turned out that, in 2014, they plotted diversions on Moldovan territory as well.
Those concerned were preparing to destabilize the situation in Montenegro, same way as they prepared subversive activities in Moldova by June 27, 2014, when was signed the Association Agreement with the European Union.
Among diversionists are Russian citizens Eduard Shirokov and Vladimir Popov, placed late last year in international search by Montenegro authorities. According to the Montenegrin authorities, Shirokov and Popov were part of the GRU cell (Military Intelligence Service of the Russian Federation) in Belgrade, Serbia, who prepared the plot, involving for this purpose the extremist group "The Serbian Wolves", led by the nationalist Aleksandar Sindjelic. The Prosecution in Montenegro has proved that Sindjelic knew the Russian officers in eastern Ukraine, where he fought for the pro-Russian separatists.
The objective of GRU and "The Serbian wolves" was not to admit, after the elections in October 2016, the installation in Montenegro of a pro-Western government, who favored joining NATO. In Kremlin's vision, that would have weakened the Russian offensive in the Balkans and, respectively, to the consolidation of anti-Russian platform.
And in Moldova was attempted to be implemented similar plans. In 2014, in order to compromise the signing of the Agreement Republic of Moldova - EU, Moscow has designed various scenarios: from handling of certain actions of civil disobedience in Territorial Administrative Union Gagauzia (TAU Gagauzia), to the corruption of Members of the Moldovan Parliament, which would be attended, obedient to block the ratification Agreement.
During that time, in Moldova came none other than the saboteur Vladimir Popov, who traveled the route Chisinau - Tiraspol - Comrat. He entered Moldova on 30 May at 12:53, and left Chisinau on 5 June at 12:08, by plane, with a S7 company race.
----------------Coincidentally or not, but on June 5 - the last day of stay of Popov on Moldovan territory - in Balti has been a secret meeting of several public figures who opposed the signing of Moldova's EU association. At this secret meeting, which attracted the interest of the Intelligence and Security Service, participated Mihail Garbuz (the party leader of "Patriots of Moldova"), the Bashkan (the Governor) since then, Mihail Formuzal, the Bishop of Balti and Falesti Marchel, Veaceslav Perju, the head of several moldovenists organizations.
Deschide.MD wrote then that the diversionary group has developed a detailed plan to destabilize the situation, which was to materialize through an armed rebellion against the power and culminate in the proclamation of a Moldovan federation with four subjects: Chisinau, Balti, Comrat and Tiraspol.
However the scenarios failed. In early June 2014, it was successfully thwarted the active measures of GRU on the state territory. The GRU agents, in collusion with the exponents of Comrat power - the Governor Mihail Formuzal and the Chief of the Department of Youth and Sports of Gagauzia, Anatoly Cara - have targeted the creation of paramilitary detachments in the south of the country and the triggering of "operations" similar to those in eastern Ukraine. At that time they were arrested or wanted multiple people who followed the training as a diversionists in the territory of a military base near Aksai, Rostov-on-Don, from the Russian Federation. Those "courses" were supported by well-trained instructors and included lessons in military medicine, physical training, preparation and conduct of diversionary operations, assault of protected buildings, wrestling in city conditions and field, etc. However, the people concerned have been trained to build barricades to resist the police, to conduct target shooting from an automatic pistol and gun, to throw grenades and "Molotov cocktails". Curious is that the cell responsible for the preparation of "Gagauz diversionists" in 2014 were part of the same people who "responded" in autumn 2016 for Montenegro area. By the way, The Guardian wrote that the secretary of the Russian Security Council, Nikolai Patrushev, and apologized for the attempted state coup in Montenegro. The Russian Foreign Ministry denied this information.
-------------------The detainees in the summer of 2014 are Mavrodi Vasile, Dmitry Kuznetsov and Vyacheslav Urum, all natives of Comrat. Mavrodi and Kuznetsov were arrested on June 26, in a joint action of the Intelligence and Security Service and Prosecutor General's Office. Urum, on June 28, at the border with Ukraine, at the crossing point of Basarabeasca district. In August, the prosecution announced that two of the prisoners were sentenced to five years' probation.
Among those who had been accused of organizing military formation in the summer of 2014 appear and the current deputy from PSRM faction, Fyodor Gagauz. The sources consulted by the editorial office deschide.md Gagauz stated that were in the summer of 2014 in Moscow, immediately after, at the end of June, the first diversionists were arrested, from where he returned with a significant amount of money, needed for hiring lawyers and preparation of the defense of the 3 detained.
On August 4, 2014, the press published the audio recording of a conversation between Anatoli Cara and certain persons close to the Governor Mihail Formuzal. The discussion was aimed at young Gagauz, detained by SIS and PG for subversive activities and convicted on 1 August, at 5-year imprisonment, suspended.
In May-June 2014, Vladimir Popov was found illegally on Moldovan territory, being seen in Tiraspol and Comrat. His presence was aimed to research and assess the situation, in order to prepare special measures to block the signing of the EU - Moldova Agreement. In the context of developments at the time from Ukraine, but also because of the measures taken by the law enforcement agencies in Moldova, the scenarios described above have been abandoned.