11:20 09.11.2018

Austrian FM cancels Russia visit over spy scandal

1 min read
Austrian FM cancels Russia visit over spy scandal

Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl has cancelled her visit to Russia after a retired Austrian military officer was detained on suspicion of collecting intelligence for Moscow, Austrian media reported on Friday.

According to the ORF television channel, Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz made a relevant statement on Friday.

Austrian Defense Minister Mario Kunasek also spoke to reporters. It was Kunasek who informed Kneissl of suspicions in regard to the retired officer. Kurz and Kunasek said that the Prosecutor's Office is currently conducting an investigation.

Kneissl was expected to visit Russia on December 2-3, the media said.

The Austrian media reported that the retired military officer had spied for Russia for nearly 20 years. The newspaper Kronen Zeitung said, citing unnamed sources, that the officer had received around 300,000 euro for his intelligence gathering activities.

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