Belarusian KGB: Ukrainian journalist Sharoiko charged with espionage, adviser to Ukrainian embassy declared persona non grata


The State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus (KGB) says that detained Ukrainian journalist Pavlo Sharoiko has allegedly created a spy ring from among the citizens of Belarus who collected intelligence for him.

A spokesperson for the Belarusian security agency Dmitry Pobiarzhyn told a briefing, Censor.NET reports citing Tut.by.

"KGB operatives caught red-handed an officer of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Directorate Pavlo Sharoiko Oct. 25, 2017. Apparently, he received an undercover assignment as a correspondent for the Ukraine's National Public Broadcasting Company due to the experience he received as a spokesperson for the Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Directorate," Pobiarzhyn said.

The official said Sharoiko had allegedly hired Belarusian nationals to collect military and political intelligence for him. He was indicted with espionage charges under Article 358 of the Criminal Code of Belarus and placed in pre-trial custody.

Read more: Ukrainian enterprise CEO Skyba detained by Belarus secret services

KGB allegedly obtained "convincing evidence of his unlawful activities, which harm the national interests of Belarus." The law enforcers allegedly found intelligence reports on Sharoiko during the body search. Pobiarzhyn also confirmed that Sharoiko was supervised by Ihor Skvortsov, a member of Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Directorate acting under the guise of an adviser to the Ukrainian Embassy in Belarus (According to Ukrainian Foreign Ministry, Skvortsov is the first secretary of the Ukrainian embassy in Belarus). Skvortsov was declared persona non grata for activities inconsistent with his diplomatic status.

The agency said the Belarusian Foreign Ministry received files confirming the illegal intelligence activities of Ukraine's secret services against Belarus on Oct. 25. Several hours later, the Foreign Ministry notified Ukrainian Ambassador to Belarus Ihor Kyzym on the detention of alleged Ukrainian spy. However, the agreement was reached not to make it public (Ukraine's National Public Broadcasting Company Chief Zurab Alasania reported Sharoiko's detention three weeks later - Ed.).

Read more: Belarus ignoring Ukraine's requests regarding Pavlo Hryb's detention, - Foreign Ministry

KGB also detained a Belarusian national allegedly involved in collecting intelligence for Ukraine's secret services. The detainee admitted his guilt and confirmed that he was receiving payment for collecting and transferring information on the defense capability of Belarus following instructions of the Ukrainian intelligence agency.
Источник: https://censor.net.ua/en/n463359