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SBU and Czech counterintel expose pro-Russian influence network on MEPs linked to former Ukrainian oligarch

Viktor Medvedchuk
Viktor Medvedchuk

Czech counterintelligence has exposed a pro-Russian influence network on members of the European Parliament (EP) in Prague, linked to Russian dictator Vladimir Putin's godfather and former Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Medvedchuk.

The network, which allegedly paid politicians to publicly praise Russia and Putin in the European media a few months before the crucial EP elections in June, was uncovered in cooperation with the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU), according to NV's sources inside the agency.

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Politicians were expected to publish anti-Ukrainian and anti-European material on the Voice of Europe website, which was created by Medvedchuk and a former producer of the 112 Ukraine TV channel, Artem Marchevsky, in an effort to increase the number of pro-Russian politicians elected to the EP.

MEPs are now calling for a thorough investigation into the Russian influence operation and the punishment of the "colleagues" involved. The influence operation mostly involved directing funds for activities such as politicians' participation in discussion forums, rather than paying directly for votes or speeches in the parliament.

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The Czech Foreign Ministry imposed sanctions against Viktor Medvedchuk on March 27. The ministry's press release stated that Medvedchuk led a "Russian influence operation" in the Czech Republic from Russia through Voice of Europe.

Voice of Europe's website is currently unavailable, and the social network X has not posted a single post since that day.

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Currently, European MPs are demanding a thorough investigation into Russian influence, as well as punishment for "colleagues" who worked with Russian money, the source added.

On March 29, the Financial Times reported that European officials had accused Ukrainian oligarch Viktor Medvedchuk of bribing politicians as part of a Russian influence operation ahead of the European elections.

According to a joint investigation by Germany's Der Spiegel and the Czech newspaper Denik N, Petr Bystron, a member of the German Bundestag from the Alternative for Germany (AfD) party and a hopeful MEP, allegedly received payments from a "Russian influence network".

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Read the original article on The New Voice of Ukraine