Makeup and pig's blood: Reporter describes his faked slaying

02 June, 2018, 08:38 | Author: Clarence Schmidt
  • Stepan Petrenko  TASS

Ukraine's security services said on Wednesday that Babchenko's death had been faked to foil an assassination plot by Moscow.

Ukraine revealed on Wednesday that it had stage-managed the fake murder of Babchenko, a critic of the Kremlin who they said had been targeted by hitmen hired by Russian Federation, to trace a trail back to Russian Federation and expose plans for his, and other, state-sponsored assassinations.

Ukraine on Thursday defended the action of its state security services in faking the death of a Russian dissident journalist after worldwide criticism.

Ukrainian authorities took a page out of the novel-turned-horror flick "Carrie" - dousing with pigs' blood the reporter whose death they were faking, it was revealed Thursday.

The security officers took his sweatshirt and shot it through with a gun.

Babchenko said on the night of the staged murder, a makeup artist made him up to look like a murder victim.

Babchenko praised the operation, however, and thanked the Ukrainian Security Service, the SBU, for saving his life.

"But then I realised, where do you hide?" His return brought unexpected relief to those who mourned him, but it has also raised concerns from those anxious that the manner in which the ruse was carried out will have lasting negative implications.

His wife called an ambulance and he was taken to a hospital intensive care unit, where a forensic expert "documented" his death.

The dissident Russian journalist said he had to undertake the ruse because he feared he would share the fate of poisoned former Russian spy Sergei Skripal. After that, he ended up in a morgue.

Babchenko also responded to critics who have said that the ruse may ruin the credibility of journalists and the West, raising a number of ethical questions. "That Babchenko had been killed?" he said.

Kiev itself sought to justify the fake death that provoked an outpouring of grief and a diplomatic spat with Moscow. Relations between the two countries have been strained since 2014, when Russian Federation annexed Crimea and separatists backed by Moscow in eastern Ukraine have fought government troops in a conflict that has killed more than 10,000 people. "But to get the information from the Russian source, we needed to show them something - some proof that we'd done the job - to win their trust", German said in court.

Anton Gerashchenko, an adviser to the Ukrainian minister of the interior, likened the plot to a story from a crime novel. The unidentified Ukrainian man in turn allegedly hired an acquaintance to be the gunman, Gritsak said. "I have buried acquaintances, I have buried colleagues, I have buried friends, I am exhausted of burying them", he said, adding he wanted to create a new life for himself.

The SBU said it received information about a plot to kill 30 people in Ukraine, including Babchenko, but had thwarted it.


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