The state-owned Russia24 information channel leveled new unproven claims at Ukrainian peace negotiator Rustem Umerov following reviews that the member of parliament had been poisoned together with Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich.
The Wall Street Journal reported on Monday that Umerov and Abramovich—who has been performing as a mediator within the ongoing peace talks—suffered signs of suspected poisoning following a gathering in Kyiv on March 3.
Both males, WSJ wrote, suffered signs together with pink eyes, tearing, and peeling pores and skin on the arms and face.
A supply with data of the incident instructed Newsweek on Tuesday that Umerov is “feeling ok” and is constant his work as a part of the negotiating group.
It stays unclear whether or not the negotiators have been poisoned deliberately, and who—if anybody—was the goal. Russian intelligence has an extended historical past of poisoning political opponents, together with in Ukraine. This meant suspicion instantly fell on Moscow.
As the reviews have been rising, Russia24 ran a phase accusing Umerov of serving as an American spy and deliberately sabotaging efforts to finish the combating. One visitor advised, with out proof, that Umerov had obtained espionage coaching within the U.S.
“Umerov’s aides are also quiet, seemingly adding intrigue to a well-played out script, whose authors we can easily deduce,” the Russia24 host stated in an obvious reference to the U.S.
Russia24 claimed the incident was an unsuccessful assassination try, both on Umerov or Abramovich. Umerov might have been focused, the host advised, as he allegedly witnessed the killing of former Ukrainian peace delegate Denis Kireev.
Kireev, a member of Ukraine’s parliament, was killed by Ukrainian intelligence earlier this month amid suspicions he was working as a double agent on behalf of Moscow.
“Another scenario, voiced by some media outlets, is that Umerov was targeted because he allegedly was witness to the arrest and liquidation of another delegate, MP Kireev, who allegedly was preparing a coup against Zelensky,” the Russia24 stated.
Russian mediator Abramovich—who’s near President Vladimir Putin and has been sanctioned in retaliation for Russia’s invasion—may have been the goal, Russia24 claimed.
“The goal: To prevent any potential agreements from being signed,” the host stated. “Looks like the owners of some of the Ukrainian leaders are willing to use whatever means to achieve that goal, even murdering the delegates.”
The Kremlin dismissed the reviews of its involvement within the suspected poisoning of Umerov and Abramovich as a part of an “information war.”
Mykhailo Podolyak, a high aide to Ukraine’s President Volodymyr Zelensky and in addition a part of the peace negotiation group, downplayed the report. “There is a lot of speculation, various conspiracy theories,” Podolyak stated.
Umerov himself urged folks to not belief “unverified information.”
Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba stated “everyone is thirsty for news and sensations” across the negotiations. However, he added: “I advise anyone going for negotiations with Russia not to eat or drink anything, [and] preferably avoid touching surfaces.”
A U.S. intelligence official instructed Reuters they might not affirm that the incident was a results of poisoning. “The intelligence highly suggests this was environmental,” they stated, including: “E.g., not poisoning.”