Ukraine denies Sharoiko's alleged involvement in intelligence activity

Ukraine denies Sharoiko's alleged involvement in intelligence activity

A statement by the State Security Committee of Belarus that detained Ukrainian journalist Pavlo Sharoiko is allegedly an employee of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry is untrue, the directorate's press service has reported.

"On November 20, 2009, the Belarusian media spread a statement by an official representative of the State Security Committee of the Republic of Belarus concerning the involvement of Ukrainian journalist Pavlo Sharoiko in the creation of an agent network and conducting intelligence activities on the territory of the Republic of Belarus. The statement also says that Pavlo Sharoiko admitted that he is an employee of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry. The directorate's media liaisons office is authorized to state that the information mentioned in the said statement is untrue," reads the report.

The intelligence directorate reported that Sharoiko really served as head of the press service at the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ukrainian Defense Ministry, but in 2009 he was dismissed from military service for health reasons. After that, Shariko worked under a previously acquired specialty - as a Ukrainian journalist, including as a correspondent in Belarus.

As reported, Ukrainian citizen Pavlo Sharoiko, a UA: Ukrainian Radio correspondent in Belarus, was detained in Minsk on October 25. He was charged with "espionage."

The Belarusian State Security Committee stated that Shariko had allegedly admitted to working as an intelligence officer and that he had created an agency network in the country.

Earlier, on August 24, Pavlo Hryb, a 19-year-old son of a Ukrainian State Border Service officer, disappeared in Belarus. Subsequently, it became known that he was kidnapped by the Russian special services and transferred to a detention facility in Krasnodar (Russia).

On November 20, it was also known that the Belarusian intelligence services detained another Ukrainian citizen, Oleksandr Skyba, the head of PJSC Plant of Weighting Materials, who arrived in Belarus for negotiations.


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