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Russia Says Investigating Senior U.S., NATO Officials for ‘Financing Terrorism’

Emergency responders outside Crocus City Hall after last month's attack. Alexander Avilov / Moskva News Agency

Russia’s top investigative body announced Tuesday that it has launched a criminal probe into senior officials in the United States and NATO member countries who are suspected of “financing terrorism.”

Russia’s Investigative Committee, which probes major crimes, said it has “established” that money from commercial organizations had been used to “eliminate prominent political and public figures” inside and outside Russia in recent years, as well as to “inflict economic damage” against the country.

While the Investigative Committee did not specify which terrorist attacks it suspects were funded by Western organizations, the announcement comes as top Russian officials double down on claims that Ukraine and the West were involved in the deadly Crocus City Hall attack last month.

The top law enforcement body named the Ukrainian energy company Burisma Holdings as one of the implicated organizations. U.S. President Joe Biden’s son Hunter Biden served as a member of Burisma’s board of directors between 2014 and 2019.

His role has fueled Republican accusations against the Biden family over claimed corruption and culminated in an ongoing impeachment probe in U.S. Congress. Hunter Biden has denied any wrongdoing, and a former FBI informant was arrested in February on suspicion of fabricating accusations against the president’s family.

Russia’s Investigative Committee, meanwhile, said it was examining the “sources and movement of several million U.S. dollars and the involvement of specific persons from government officials and public commercial organizations of Western countries.”

It added that the investigation was working to establish “links of the direct perpetrators of terrorist acts with their foreign curators, organizations and sponsors.” The law enforcement body did not name any of the U.S. and NATO member country officials it was investigating.

Both Kyiv and the West deny any involvement in last month’s massacre at the concert venue outside Moscow and accuse Russia of exploiting the tragedy, which left at least 145 people dead, for propaganda reasons.

AFP contributed reporting.

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