Much of Moscow’s elite is deeply troubled by the trajectory of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of the neighboring country. Senior Kremlin officials are alarmed by the wide-ranging sanctions imposed by the West in response, according to leaked classified information cited by the Mirror.
“A senior Kremlin official has reached out to Western diplomats and intelligence chiefs in a bid to help end the war in Ukraine. He is a representative of Putin’s inner circle and has sent a signal of willingness to negotiate. The mood of the Kremlin elite is one of panic,” a classified document claims.
It is not clear which member of Moscow’s top leadership is in question, but the insider is described in the document as a “pillar of the regime” in Russia, reported BGVoice.
“It often happens, as happened in the closing stages of the Second World War, that officials of a country concerned about its future take approaches to secure it,” a source told the Mirror of Ukraine.
If a senior politician in Moscow publicly declares a desire for peace in Ukraine or criticizes Putin, his life is in extreme danger along with that of his family, the publication also writes.
Anatoly Chubais, a former deputy prime minister who oversaw the transformation of Russia’s economy from communist to capitalist, resigned as Putin’s special envoy to international organizations in March and left Russia to live in exile to protest the war. Late last month, the 67-year-old fell suddenly and seriously ill after experiencing numbness in his limbs and is now in intensive care suffering from a rare neurological condition.
The case of Chubais is just the latest in a series of mysterious illnesses and violent deaths that have befallen Russian businessmen, officials and their loved ones and families.
On February 25 – the day after the start of the invasion of Ukraine – a high-ranking employee of Russian energy giant Gazprom, Alexander Tyulakov, was found dead in his garage. The finance and security specialist at the level of Deputy Director General died by hanging. A “death note” was found nearby, the contents of which have not been disclosed. According to reports, he was “severely beaten” before his death.
On April 18, 51-year-old Vladislav Avaev, a former Kremlin official and vice president of Gazprombank, the energy company’s financial affiliate, was found dead by his daughter Anastasia in his family’s 14th-floor apartment in a Moscow block. And not only Avaev, but also his wife Elena, 47 years old, and their other daughter Maria, 13 years old. They were all shot, and a gun was found in the dead man’s hand.
The 55-year-old millionaire Sergey Protosenya, former deputy chairman of Novatek – Russia’s largest private gas company, whose main shareholder is Gazprom – was also found hanged in the garden of his villa. The bodies of his wife Natalia and his 18-year-old daughter were also in the house. They were axed while they slept.