MOSCOW, Dec 22, 2020, Meduza. The recording of the phone conversation between opposition figure Alexey Navalny and a federal agent allegedly involved in poisoning him is fake, the FSB’s Public Relations Center told the Russian state news agency TASS on Monday, December 21, according to the Meduza (according to the Russian law, Meduza has the status of a “foreign agent”).
The video with the telephone conversation is fake. Using the method of substituting a subscriber’s number is a well-known technique of foreign intelligence services, previously tested in anti-Russian campaigns more than once, which makes it possible to exclude the possibility of identifying the real participants in the conversation.
The FSB’s spokespeople also added that the journalistic investigation implicating federal agents in Navalny’s poisoning was a planned provocation against the Russian intelligence services.
The so-called “investigation” A. Navalny posted on his website about the alleged actions undertaken against him is a planned provocation aimed at discrediting Russia’s FSB and officers of the federal security service, the implementation of which would not have been possible without organizational and technical support from foreign intelligence services.
On December 14, Bellingcat, The Insider, CNN, and Der Spiegel published an investigation implicating a special FSB sub-unit in poisoning Alexey Navalny with a Novichok-type nerve agent in August 2020. Earlier in the day on December 21, Alexey Navalny shared a video revealing that he had managed to fool one of the federal agents identified in the investigation into detailing the Kremlin’s poisoning operation.
During his annual press conference on December 17, Russian President Vladimir Putin called the journalistic investigation a “legalization of materials from the American intelligences services.” Putin then maintained that Russian intelligence officers “ought to keep an eye” on Navalny. “But this in no way means that it’s necessary to poison him, who needs that?” Putin underscored. “You see, if they’d wanted to [poison him], they would have finished [the job].”