Former Deputy Secretary of the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine Volodymyr Sivkovych has been served with a new suspicion of treason. According to the investigation, the official was recruited by the Russian Federal Security Service. In 2014, he moved to Moscow.
For his part, Sivkovych recruited MP Nestor Shufrych, who is now also suspected of treason, the Prosecutor-General's Office and the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) said.
"According to the role assigned to him, the former official was to involve well-known Ukrainian politicians in performing the tasks set by Russian handlers. The politicians were supposed to influence public opinion and spread narratives about the incompetence of the heads of Ukrainian authorities among the population," the prosecutor's office said.
The politicians recruited by the suspect were also supposed to convince people that there was no other alternative but the pro-Russian political course of Ukraine. They were provided with discrediting and provocative information, which they were supposed to publish in order to aggravate the socio-political situation in Ukraine and complicate relations with other countries.
In his speeches and interviews, Shufrych systematically disseminated materials that undermined and discredited the Ukrainian authorities, as well as the activities of the heads of intelligence and law enforcement agencies.
"He was one of the main 'speakers' who, under the coordination of Sivkovych, promulgated Kremlin narratives during speeches on television and on the pages of online publications. It has been established that Sivkovych's associates spread fake reports about the internal situation in Ukraine, as well as Moscow's 'theses' about the 'lack of alternatives' to the pro-Russian vector in foreign policy," the SBU said.
In this way, the Kremlin tried to destabilise the situation inside Ukraine as much as possible before the full-scale invasion and discredit official Kyiv in the eyes of its Western partners.
Based on the evidence collected, SBU investigators served Sivkovych with a notice of suspicion under Part 2 of Article 28 and Part 1 of Article 111 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (high treason committed by prior conspiracy by a group of persons).