Kaliningrad official arrested for spying

  • 2006-10-25
  • From wire reports
VILNIUS - The Russian Federal Security Bureau has arrested an official in the Kaliningrad exclave on accusation of revealing state secrets to Lithuania.

"The Russian FSB arrested a Russian citizen in Kaliningrad who had worked with the special services of Lithuania," a spokesman for the federal security service told the AFP news Agency on Oct. 24.
Lieutenant Colonel Vasily Khitryuk, deputy head of the Baltic region's prison sentencing board, was caught with electronic devices "containing state secrets" about the Kaliningrad exclave's Russian Baltic Fleet and armed forces, the spokesman said.
He added that Khitryuk had been gathering combat and mobilization information from former law enforcement colleagues and armed forces acquaintances.

A case on state treason has been opened.

Asked to comment on the situation, Lithuanian Prime Minister Gediminas Kirkilas told the Baltic News Service that, "We are not spying there."
The prime minister refused to speculate whether the arrest was a move by Russia to counter Lithuania's recent expulsion of a Russian diplomat from Vilnius.

Two weeks ago, the Russian Embassy's first secretary, Oleg Ryabchikov, was reportedly asked to leave Lithuania on suspicions of spying. He was also accused of trying to influence the Baltic state's decision to support Georgia amid its political crisis with Moscow.

Chairman of Parliament's foreign affairs committee, Justinas Karosas, noted that the recent FSB arrest merely "coincided" with Lithuania's earlier decision to expel a Russian diplomat accused of espionage, adding that the two events should not be linked without sufficient information.
He emphasized that, although the Russian official was arrested for gathering classified information, this did not automatically prove that he was a spy for Lithuania.