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Russia’s FSB Thwarted Attack on Putin Campaign Office – Mediazona

Video of the FSB arrest, which Medizona says it geolocated near the Putin campaign office in Barnaul. FSB of Russia

Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) foiled an attempted arson attack earlier this month against a campaign office for Vladimir Putin ahead of the 2024 presidential election, the independent news outlet Mediazona reported Monday.

State-run media reported earlier that the FSB’s branch in the Altai region had detained three young men with five Molotov cocktails “directly near the headquarters” of an unidentified presidential candidate in the Siberian city of Barnaul.

Hidden camera footage shared by an anonymous Telegram channel, which is believed to have links to Russia’s security services, claimed to show at least three young men with blurred faces preparing what appeared to be Molotov cocktails inside a living room. 

The footage then cut to masked agents detaining three people on a snowy street at night.

Mediazona said it was able to geolocate the detention footage to Putin’s campaign office in Barnaul, which is the regional capital of Altai, some 3,000 kilometers east of Moscow. 

The three detained men — ages 23, 26 and 18 — face up to 20 years in prison each on charges of attempted “terrorism.” 

The 23-year-old was said to be “in contact for a long time” with an unidentified terrorist organization and had recruited the other two to carry out his “terrorist scheme,” the FSB claimed.

Law enforcement officials said they had detained the three suspects ahead of Russia’s March 15-17 presidential race but did not say when exactly.

It was not immediately possible to independently verify Mediazona’s report, which came days after a deadly attack on a Moscow concert hall that observers said exposed systemic failures within Russian law enforcement agencies.

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