The Prosecutor of Montenegro has accused Russia of involvement in the coup attempt

The police of Montenegro

Photo: Darko Vojinovic / AP

The special Prosecutor of Montenegro Milivoje Catnic accused the Russian authorities of involvement in the coup attempt in Montenegro, which was to occur on 16 October 2016

Russian authorities were involved in the attempted coup in Montenegro, the aim of which was to prevent the country’s accession to NATO. This was stated by the special Prosecutor of Montenegro Milivoje Catnic, according to the newspaper Vijesti.

“These events was the Russian nationalist structure. But, in addition, we now know that they were attended by Russian authorities,” — said Katnic.

According to him, at the head of the group, preparing the coup and the murder of former Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic, was the citizen of Russia Edward Shirokov, whose real name Shishmakov.

“He’s not a captain, and Edward Shishmakov that in 2014, he was Deputy military attache in Poland, but was expelled because of espionage in favor of Russia and declared persona non grata. This passport was issued to him by the Russian authorities, he is a member of the Russian security services,” — said Katnic.

Earlier Katnic said the evidence that Russian authorities were involved in the coup attempt, no.

On the eve of the newspaper the Telegraph, citing sources in the British government announced that the coup attempt in Montenegro involved in the Russian special services. One of the interlocutors of the newspaper claimed that the coup attempt, which was to occur the day of parliamentary elections, could be accused of uncontrolled Russian agents and nationalists, but “it’s hard to imagine that all this has not received approval from above.”

16 October 2016 Montenegro held parliamentary elections. On the same day it became known about the detention of 12 citizens of Serbia, who, according to the authorities of Montenegro, was going to sabotage.

In November the Prosecutor’s office of Montenegro stated that the group consisted of citizens of Serbia and Russia, had planned the murder of the Montenegrin Prime Minister Milo Djukanovic and a coup attempt in the country. Currently, the Interpol is looking for two citizens of Russia — Edward Shirokov and Vladimir Popov. According to investigators, they organized a criminal group, whose aim was the assassination of Djukanovic, and also instructed the leader of the nationalist organization “Serbian wolves” Alexander Sindjelic to organize riots on election night.

British newspaper the Guardian, citing a source close to the government of Serbia, later reported that the Secretary of security Council of Russia Nikolay Patrushev during his visit to Belgrade apologized for “Russian nationalists” who planned acts of sabotage, and were assured that these actions were not sanctioned by the Kremlin. The Russian foreign Ministry denied reports about the apology Patrushev and called them “classic provocation”.

The Kremlin strongly denied any involvement in attempts to destabilize the situation in Montenegro. “Of course, we categorically reject the possibility of official involvement in whatever the attempts of the organization of any illegal actions”, — said the press Secretary of the President of Russia Dmitry Peskov.

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