Medvedev sacks Russia spy chief

Head of Russia's largest intelligence agency is dismissed for dissent over reforms.

    General Korabelnikov led Russia's military
    intelligence agency since 1997 [EPA]

    According to Russian media, Korabelnikov had criticised reforms that aim to modernise Russia's army and nuclear arsenal.

    The reforms would also see a reduction in the number of generals and personnel, making them deeply unpopular in the military.

    'Message to generals'

    The Kommersant newspaper reported last November that Korabelnikov was one of a group of generals who had submitted their resignations in protests over the reforms.

    Viktor Ilyukhin, deputy leader of the opposition Communist party and former deputy head of parliament's national security committee, said Korabelnikov's dismissal was a "blow at our Russian forces and the security of our nation".

    "He was a born intelligence chief, a man who brilliantly knows the situation in the world and one of the best experts in the situation in Russia's army," he told the Reuters news agency.

    Analysts believe Medvedev may be trying to send a message to generals that he is not going to tolerate dissent on military reform.

    Alexander Shlyakhturov, Korabelnikov's successor, was the sacked general's first deputy. He is seen as a more compliant figure who is less likely to challenge the reforms.

    The GRU was created in 1918 under Leon Trotsky, and is controlled by the military general staff.

    Since its creation it has been widely seen as a staunch rival of other spy agencies.

    SOURCE: Agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Meet the deported nurse aiding asylum seekers at US-Mexico border

    Meet the deported nurse helping refugees at the border

    Francisco 'Panchito' Olachea drives a beat-up ambulance around Nogales, taking care of those trying to get to the US.

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    The rise of Pakistan's 'burger' generation

    How a homegrown burger joint pioneered a food revolution and decades later gave a young, politicised class its identity.

    'We will cut your throats': The anatomy of Greece's lynch mobs

    The brutality of Greece's racist lynch mobs

    With anti-migrant violence hitting a fever pitch, victims ask why Greek authorities have carried out so few arrests.