Ukraine’s CIA-trained intelligence agencies have assassinated “dozens” of Russians and Ukrainian collaborators since the start of Moscow’s invasion, The Washington Post reported Monday, citing more than two dozen anonymous current and former Ukrainian, U.S. and Western intelligence and security officials.
The missions involved elite teams that were formed, trained and equipped in “close partnership” with the CIA, which is estimated to have spent “tens of millions” of U.S. dollars on transforming Ukraine’s intelligence agencies since 2015.
But U.S. officials cited by The Washington Post stressed that the CIA had “no involvement” in the targeted killings.
The Kremlin has repeatedly accused the United States of playing a direct role in the war in Ukraine since Russia invaded its pro-Western neighbor 21 months ago.
The Washington Post said the SBU security service’s targets included Daria Dugina, the daughter of pro-war ultranationalist Alexander Dugin who was killed in an August 2022 car bombing.
The GUR military intelligence agency’s targets included a senior Russian draft officer who was gunned down during a morning run this summer.
The military agency also conducted drone strikes on Russian soil, including a May 2023 attack on the Kremlin that briefly set fire to a roof section.
Russian officials in occupied Ukrainian territories and alleged Ukrainian collaborators were also killed in SBU and GUR operations, according to the report.
“All targets hit by the SBU are completely legal,” director Vasyl Malyuk said in a statement to the newspaper.
Major operations by the SBU and GUR required “tacit or otherwise” clearance from President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Ukraine has adhered to a policy of not claiming responsibility for attacks on Russian soil or in the occupied territories since the start of the Russian invasion.
A spokesperson for Zelensky did not respond to The Washington Post’s requests for comment.
The CIA declined to comment on The Washington Post’s report.