aA
The spokeswoman for Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs on Thursday said she had no information on a possible exchange of spies with Lithuania and Norway.
Russia dismisses reports of possible spy swap with Lithuania and Norway
© Shutterstock

"I have no information on this issue. It all reminds some sort of insinuations," Maria Zakharova told journalists in Moscow. "Today, I have no specific information I would share with you."

Well-informed sources earlier confirmed it to BNS that the Lithuania and Russia had agreed to exchange persons sentenced for spying.

According to the BNS sources, Lithuania is to transfer Nikolai Filipchenko, a Russian Federal Security Service agent convicted two years ago, in exchange for Yevgeny Mataitis and Aristidas Tamosaitis, two Lithuanian citizens convicted in Russia in 2016.

The swap deal also covers a Norwegian citizen sentenced in Russia and another Russian citizen, according to the sources.

Lithuanian State Defense Council, chaired by President Gitanas Nauseda, approved a spy swap deal with Russia last week, the sources said.

Filipchenko was detained by Lithuanian officials while travelling from the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad to Belarus in 2015.

In July 2017, Vilnius Regional Court convicted Filipchenko, identified as an officer of the Russian Federal Security Service (FSB), of espionage. According to the court, the Russian man used forged documents to conceal his identity.

According to Lithuania's intelligence officials, it was the first time that a sworn officer of the Russian security service had been detained in Lithuania on spying charges.

Lithuanian law-enforcement officials then said that Filipchenko had sought to recruit officers from Lithuania's VIP Protection Department to bug the office and home of the then President Dalia Grybauskaite. There were no comments on that information following the court's judgment.

Tamosaitis was sentenced to 12 years in prison by a Moscow court in March 2016. In April of the same year, a Kaliningrad court handed a 13-year prison sentence to Mataitis, a dual Lithuanian-Russian citizen.

Moscow says both men carried out Lithuanian military intelligence tasks. Lithuanian officials never commented on links with these individuals.

BNS
It is prohibited to copy and republish the text of this publication without a written permission from UAB „BNS“.

President expects J&J vaccine to fill gap after AstraZeneca cuts deliveries

Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine, expected to be authorized by the EU in March, should help...

Skuodis: Lithuania supports Poland’s objective to include the Via Carpathia route in the Trans-European Transport Network

Lithuania supports the ambition of Poland and other countries along the Via Carpathia to include the...

Updates of COVID-19 affected countries list

Following the Friday update, the United States of America has been added to the list of countries...

"Game of Thrones" between president and ruling party for EC: arguments for and against

Lithuania's ruling conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrats have launched an...

243 new coronavirus cases

On Sunday, 243 new COVID-19 cases were recorded in Lithuania. In total, Lithuania has already recorded...

Top news

"Game of Thrones" between president and ruling party for EC: arguments for and against

Lithuania's ruling conservative Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrats have launched an...

President expects J&J vaccine to fill gap after AstraZeneca cuts deliveries

Johnson & Johnson's coronavirus vaccine, expected to be authorized by the EU in March, should help...

243 new coronavirus cases

On Sunday, 243 new COVID-19 cases were recorded in Lithuania. In total, Lithuania has already recorded...

Vilnius Book Fair postponed to 2022

Vilnius' annual international book fair has been postponed to next year due to the epidemiological...

Vilnius Airport opens Covid-19 testing site

From March 1st, passenger travelling though Vilnius Airport will have the option of conveniently...