October 14, 2007

Lithuanian intelligence agencies helped KGB’s Mitrokhin to escape to Great Britain - newspaper

The former archivist of the KGB of the USSR, Vasily Mitrokhin, left for the West on
November 7, 1992 with his family through Lithuania ot Riga, as it was reported earlier, and those Lithuanian intelligence agencies that helped him, Vilnius-based newspaper Lietuvos zinios reports.
This information was confirmed also by the former Lithuanian Minister Audrius Butkevicius, who refused to expand on the details.
"Intelligence agencies of Lithuania did participate in the operation of transfer of Mitrokhin and his archive to Great Britain, this became one of most sensible impacts on the KGB during all the history of this most secret organization," the newspaper is quoting the former intelligence chief of the Ministry of Defense of Lithuania, colonel Virginius Cesnuliavicius as saying.
News agency Interfax cites Cesnuliavicius that the Lithuanian security services engaged the operation have under the initiative of the British MIS intelligence agents early in 1992. According to Cesnuliavicius, Mitrokhin with his family arrived to Lithuania under a pretext of rest in Druskininkai, a popular Lithuanian sea-resort. They were met in Vilnius by the employees of the Lithuanian security services, who have brought them to Klaipeda where a vessel under the Swedish flag was waiting for them already. The boat delivered the former KGB archivist and his archive to Sweden, and in some days - to Great Britain. It was affirmed in the book Mitrokhin's Archive that the former KGB archivist left for the West through Riga, however the newspaper alleges that this was done to mislead the Russian security services and to cover up traces.
Working in the KGB of the USSR, for many years he thorughly copied documents to which he had access. He came to the United Kingdom in 1992. The confidential materials taken out from the KGB archives subsequently became a basis for the book Mitrokhin's Archive, written by him in the co-authorship with Professor Christopher Andrew. Mitrokhin died in London in January, 2004, at the age of 80.

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