Putin Sees & Hears It All: How Russia’s Intelligence Agencies Menace the UK
For too long, Britain’s security policy has been premised upon the naïve assumption that Russia has given up its Cold-War mind-set. This report shows that Russia’s spycraft is just as audacious as it has ever been.
A new report from the Henry Jackson Society think tank – endorsed by the former Director-General of MI6 – makes explosive claims about the scale of Russian espionage in the UK. The report is based upon confidential interviews with high-level dissident, defector, and intelligence sources and sets out both banal and brazen examples of what it says is Vladimir Putin’s ongoing menacing of our streets. As well as chilling anecdotes of open interference in our affairs, the report includes unto-now unpublished assessments of the scale of Russian espionage in the British capital.
Amongst the report’s findings are:
- Russia’s intelligence and security services are as much as 52 times the size of their British equivalents.
- There are up to five times the number of Russian case officers in the UK as there were in 2010. These 200 ‘case officers’ are handling up to 500 agents.
- Out of an estimated population of 150,000 Russian ex-pats living in London, up to half are said to be FSB, GRU, or SVR informants – potentially, some 75,000 assets.
- As many as half of Russian Embassy diplomats are actively engaged in intelligence work, with as many – if not more – said to be working in Russia’s Trade Delegation.
- The UK’s “Warnings Index” – relied upon by Border Control to flag persons of interest, including spies – has proved fatally ineffective at preventing Russian officers from freely entering the country in order to execute hostile operations.
The report calls upon the Government to redouble its efforts in combatting the threat posed by Russia. Amongst other proposals, it recommends that consideration be given to downgrading intelligence material as part of a new approach for greater openness about the scale of the Russia’s activities. The report also suggests that the Government should assess whether to revoke the Parliamentary access of media outlets found to be playing host to Russian spies.
(Inc. UK P&P)