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28 Nov, 2023 12:16

Wife of Ukraine’s top spy poisoned – media

Marianna Budanova has been hospitalized after being diagnosed with heavy metal poisoning, reports claim
Wife of Ukraine’s top spy poisoned – media

The wife of the head of Ukraine’s Main Intelligence Directorate (GUR) is in a hospital after allegedly being poisoned, the Babel news website claimed on Tuesday, citing intelligence sources.

The outlet reported that Marianna Budanova was hospitalized after a “prolonged deterioration” in her health, and that she has already undergone a course of treatment. Babel's sources reportedly said doctors believe the 30-year-old to have suffered heavy metal poisoning, but noted that she is now in stable condition.

“These substances are not used in any way in everyday life and military affairs,” the intelligence sources reportedly said, adding that their presence in Budanova’s body indicate “a purposeful attempt to poison a specific person.”

According to Babel, an investigation has been launched into the possible attempt on the woman’s life.

Other Ukrainian outlets, such as UNIAN and Ukrainskaya Pravda have also confirmed Budanova’s poisoning. Their sources claim that it most likely happened via food she ate and that she is currently in a hospital in Ukraine.

Ukrainskaya Pravda claims that a number of other GUR employees have also been diagnosed with heavy metal poisoning, noting that Budanova was the first to manifest symptoms since she is “small and light in weight.”

GUR representative Andrey Usov has reportedly confirmed Budanova’s poisoning in a statement to US-state broadcaster RFE/RL, saying that she has indeed been diagnosed with heavy metal poisoning and is currently undergoing treatment.

In interviews, GUR chief Kirill Budanov has stated that his wife currently lives with him in his office. Since June 2021 she has been working as an adviser to Kiev Mayor Vitaliy Klitschko on preventing corruption.