Russian President Vladimir Putin is preparing to send an “army of saboteurs” to the U.K. to target key infrastructure, including power stations, in an attempt to “swing public opinion against Ukraine,” The Daily Mail reported.
MI5, the U.K.’s domestic counterintelligence and security agency, recently informed Home Secretary Priti Patel and her team about the high-level threat, as well as Prime Minister Boris Johnson and his chief of staff, Steve Barclay.
“There is a serious concern that officers or agents attached to Russia’s security services may attempt to enter the U.K. and target strategic locations,” a security source told the Daily Mail. “We are well aware of their capabilities and have seen how Putin is using these agencies in Eastern Europe.”
The U.K.'s Special Branch has been tasked with increased monitoring of travelers to the country as a result.
The U.K.’s Ministry of Defense and the Foreign Office told the Daily Mail they were “well aware of their capabilities and have seen how Putin is using these agencies in Eastern Europe.”
The report came a day after the British government said Russian internet trolls based in an old arms factory in St. Petersburg were targeting world leaders online over their support for Ukraine.
Johnson is one of those targets.
British foreign secretary Liz Truss told the Guardian they “cannot allow the Kremlin and its shady troll farms to invade our online spaces with their lies about Putin’s illegal war."
“The U.K. government has alerted international partners and will continue to work closely with allies and media platforms to undermine Russian information operations,” she added.
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