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26 Feb, 2024 22:06

Father labels murdered Russian turncoat pilot son ‘a traitor’

The airman who deserted to Ukraine deserved his fate, according to one of his parents
Father labels murdered Russian turncoat pilot son ‘a traitor’

The estranged father of Maksim Kuzimov, the former Rusian pilot who defected in a military helicopter to Ukraine, leaving his two crew mates to be liquidated by Kiev, has lashed out at his son days after his murder in Spain.

Oleg Sivaev told Russian media on Monday that his estranged son’s death in Spain did not come as a surprise, calling Kuzminov a “Judas” who sold out his country for a fistful of dollars.

Kuzminov was found dead earlier this month, riddled with bullets and run over by a car. He had allegedly been given a new identity under a relocation programme.

“Of course I expected that to happen to him,” Sivaev said in a video shared by the Telegram channel Baza. “No country has ever respected a traitor.”

“He acted like Judas,” Sivaev added. “But I pity him that he sold out for small change. Betrayed his fatherland, his teammates.”

Sivaev said he hadn’t seen Kuzminov since 2013, when he was told his son was “studying in the West and working as a pilot.”

On February 13, Spanish authorities reported a homicide in the resort town of Villajoyosa, later identifying the body as that of Kuzminov. He had reportedly been paid $500,000 by the government in Kiev and placed in a “protection plan” in an EU country.

Mikhail Podoliak, Ukrainian President Vladimir Zelensky's top advisor, accused Moscow of assassinating the turncoat using the “Russian mafia,” which is allegedly “well established” in Spain.

“If a pilot who enjoys a protection plan has to avoid contacts, change his life to stay alive, and this still happens to him, Spain has to investigate,” Podoliak told the newspaper El Mundo in an interview published on Monday.

According to Spanish media, the government in Madrid provided the pilot with a false identity, but no other “protection.”

While taking no responsibility for Kuzminov’s death, Russian Foreign Intelligence Service chief Sergey Naryshkin called him a “traitor and criminal” who became “a moral corpse” the moment he carried out his betrayal. 

“To a dog, a dog’s death,” said Dmitry Medvedev, former president and current deputy head of the National Security Council, in response to a question about Kuzminov’s reported demise.