Ukraine admits Putin and Wagner chief are on 'kill list' - but efforts have been hampered by Vladimir's 'body doubles'

25 May 2023, 11:13

Ukraine has admitted killing Vladimir Putin is a top priority
Ukraine has admitted killing Vladimir Putin is a top priority. Picture: Getty
Kieran Kelly

By Kieran Kelly

A top Ukrainian intelligence official has admitted its special units are trying to kill Vladimir Putin but said efforts have been hampered by his 'body doubles'.

Alongside the Russian president, Wagner mercenary chief Yevgeny Prigozhin and senior Russian military commander General Sergei 'Armageddon' Surovikin are also on the 'kill list'.

Senior intelligence commander Vadym Skibitsky said it has been difficult trying to kill Putin, telling Die Welt that the president "stays holed up" and that services are "not sure whether it's really him".

Ukraine's head of military intelligence previously claimed Putin is using a body double because his ears have changed in recent appearances.

Listen and subscribe to Unprecedented: Inside Downing Street on Global Player

Russian President Vladimir Putin
Russian President Vladimir Putin. Picture: Getty

Though it has been difficult for Ukraine's intelligence services, Mr Skibitsky said Putin "is now beginning to stick his head out".

The intelligence commander also admitted that there is a number of other senior Russian officials on the list, warning "everyone will have to answer for their actions" in Ukraine.

Read More: Putin targeted in Kremlin drone assassination attempt - but Ukraine denies fireball strike on Moscow

"Chief of Staff Valery Gerasimov and Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu planned the attack and now they cannot turn back," Mr Skibitsky said.

He continued: "Many people in Russia still support this 'special operation' [war against Ukraine], but thanks to social media and phone checks, we know that so many Russians have died now that it scares people."

Russian Minister of Defence, Sergei Shoigu, Chief of the General Staff is also on the kill list
Russian Minister of Defence, Sergei Shoigu, Chief of the General Staff is also on the kill list. Picture: Getty

Russia has already claimed that Ukrainian drones tried to assassinate Putin at the Kremlin earlier this month.

Footage circulated on the Telegram messaging app that showed a drone explode above the dome of the Kremlin Senate building.

Read More: Head of Russia's Wagner group claims full control of Bakhmut as Ukraine says 'fighting still going on'

Read More: 'Disposable' Russian troops plied with drugs then unleashed in suicide missions against Ukraine in brutal new tactics

Another clip showed what is believed to be anti-aircraft fire over the Russian capital.

Ukraine's president Volodymyr Zelenskyy said at the time: "We don't attack Putin or Moscow. We fight on on our territory. We are defending our villages and cities."

Moscow said Kyiv tried to strike him with two unmanned vehicles overnight but the attempt failed and the president is safe, and branded it a "terrorist" act it could retaliate over.

But Mr Skibitsky said "we are at war and these are our enemies".

Read More: Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomes Joe Biden backing plan to help Ukraine with fighter jets

"If an important figure produces and finances weapons for them, then its elimination would save the lives of many civilians," he added.

"And then he gets wiped out. According to international conventions, it is then a legitimate target."

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

Sir Ed Davey and Keir Starmer

Labour and Liberal Democrats pledge to cut cancer waiting times, as Tories admit 'there's more to do'

Exclusive
Mark Harper has admitted there is a 'hard fight ahead' for the Conservatives to win the election

Minister admits 'hard fight ahead' as poll suggests 'Tory extinction' - but says no deal to be done with Farage

William and Charles have shared Father's Day messages

Prince William sends touching Father's Day message to Charles with new photo, as King also shares childhood video

Labour and the Conservatives will face off in the July 4 election

Labour landslide could see Tories winning just 72 seats, poll finds, as Rishi Sunak's party faces 'electoral extinction'

Live
British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak

General Election LIVE: Poll suggests Tory wipe-out on July 4, as Sunak insists 'only election itself matters'

Exclusive
Pooja Kanda with Ronan

Mother of murdered son urges online shops to stop selling knives voluntarily if laws won't ban them

Israel has paused fighting to allow more aid into southern Gaza

Israel announces 'tactical pause' in fighting to allow more aid into southern Gaza

Rishi Sunak said his faith guides him

Rishi Sunak says 'Hindu faith and duty' guide him as PM, and insists he is patriotic despite Nigel Farage's attacks

Gordon Ramsay 'lucky to be alive' as star shows off shocking injuries after being involved 'brutal' cycling accident

Gordon Ramsay 'lucky to be alive' as star shows off shocking injuries after being involved in 'brutal' cycling accident

Putin is 'not interested in genuine peace' in Ukraine, Rishi Sunak tells world in Switzerland

Putin is 'not interested in genuine peace' in Ukraine, Rishi Sunak tells world leaders in Switzerland

Kate's big comeback: Princess and William share tender moment as she re-joins royals at Trooping the Colour

Kate's big comeback: Princess and William share tender moment as she re-joins royals at Trooping the Colour

The attack, which took place in a garden east Germany on Friday night, saw the knifeman stab four people before police arrived at the scene.

German police shoot dead knifeman at Euro 2024 party after rampage leaves one dead and three injured

Businessman sues Apple after wife finds ‘deleted’ iPhone messages to prostitute

Businessman sues Apple after wife finds ‘deleted’ iPhone messages to prostitute

Olympic cyclist Sir Bradley Wiggins is bankrupt, homeless and has "lost absolutely everything", according to his lawyer.

Olympic cyclist Sir Bradley Wiggins has 'lost absolutely everything' as star faces selling medals following bankruptcy

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer

Keir Starmer promises no capital gains tax on sales of homes as he dismisses tax hike claims

Home Secretary calls for 'urgent investigation' after shock footage emerges of police ramming escaped cow

Fury grows as shock footage shows police ramming escaped cow with squad car