Zelensky orders purge of Ukraine’s state guard in wake of alleged assassination plots

INDEPENDENT:  Volodymyr Zelensky has ordered the new chief of Ukraine’s state guard service to purge its ranks after two of its officers were accused of plans to assassinate senior officials.

The state security service (SBU) said last month that it had caught two guard service colonels accused of cooperating with Russia to plot the assassination of the Ukrainian president, military intelligence chief Kyrylo Budanov and other officials.

Mr Zelensky introduced staff to the new head of Ukraine’s state guard, Colonel Oleksiy Morozov, on Monday and said his main task was to ensure that only those who see their future tied with Ukraine could join the agency.

He said on Telegram: “And, of course, the agency must be cleared of anyone who chooses not Ukraine for themselves or discredits the state guard service.” The guard service provides security for various governement officials.

Mr Zelensky fired Mr Morozov’s predecessor Serhiy Rud in May, two days after the SBU detained agency employees who it said worked for Russia’s Federal Security Service and leaked classified information. There has been no comment from Moscow on the allegations.

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