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Image: picture-alliance/epa/L. Piergiovanni
Conflicts

OSCE 'concerned' about possible Ukraine mole

July 17, 2018

Russian intelligence has acquired internal documents and dossiers from a spy, likely an OSCE staff member, reported ARD. The dossiers included personal information about staff susceptibility to alcohol and women.

https://p.dw.com/p/31ZNz

The Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe's (OSCE) monitoring mission in Ukraine on Monday expressed alarm at alleged espionage activities undermining their work.

"The Mission is concerned about any alleged breach of its security and is determined to examine all the allegations thoroughly in accordance with established procedures," the Ukraine mission said in a statement.

German broadcaster ARD earlier Monday reported that Russia's domestic intelligence agency, the Federal Security Service (FSB), had received internal documents, communications and dossiers on OSCE staff, likely via a staff member.

OSCE staff inspecting tanks
OSCE has hundreds of staff in Ukraine to monitor a ceasefire in eastern UkraineImage: picture-alliance/AP Photo/M. Black

'Potential risk for staff'

The dossiers, in particular, reportedly contained personal information about staff, including the types of women they were attracted to, their financial situation and whether they were susceptible to alcohol.

"Without proper verification, the OSCE … cannot comment or speculate on documents of unknown origin," the mission said. "However, the Mission is concerned that alleged breaches may carry a potential risk for its staff, compromising their privacy and security.

Read more: 'We won't leave you alone,' says German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas tells Ukraine

The OSCE monitoring mission in Ukraine is the largest field operation in the history of the organization. Its main task is to observe the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia rebels.

Ukraine: Casualties of a low-level war

No end in sight

More than 10,000 people have been killed since pro-Russia forces launched a rebel insurgency in eastern Ukraine in 2014. Earlier that year, Moscow launched a military intervention and subsequent annexation of the Crimean Peninsula in an internationally-condemned referendum.

Read more: 6 stumbling blocks in German-Russia relations

Despite German and French efforts to shore up support for a ceasefire deal known as Minsk II, fighting continues to erupt between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russia rebels. The mission said that over the past week, it recorded "more cease violations" than the previous reporting session.

ls/aw (dpa, ARD)

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