Putin's chief poisoner 'fired from FSB for criticising Ukraine war'

Putin’s chief poisoner ‘is fired from the FSB for criticising the Ukraine war’ after telling his friends the invasion had ‘gone too far’

  • Colonel-General Eduard Chernovoltsev told friends he ‘regretted’ the war
  • He oversaw the NII-2 FSB, where multiple poisons are developed in a secret lab
  • The Kremlin said the 52-year-old has ‘retired’ after he was removed from his post

Vladimir Putin’s ‘poisoner-in-chief’ has been fired as head of the FSB’s secret chemical laboratories for criticising the war in Ukraine, a report has claimed.

Colonel-General Eduard Chernovoltsev, 52, was in overall charge of NII-2 FSB, a research institute which develops deadly poisons used against Kremlin foes such as Alexei Navalny.

A source told independent media The Insider that the senior intelligence chief had previously lived in Kyiv and was unhappy about the war which started in February.

He ‘greatly regretted the start of the military operation in Ukraine and, in the company of his friends, said more than once that it has all gone too far’, said a source.

Colonel-General Eduard Chernovoltsev, 52, has been fired as head of the FSB’s secret chemical laboratories for criticising the war in Ukraine

The Kremlin predictable viewed these comments as disloyalty to the authoritarian regime and removed him from the post. 

Chernovoltsev oversaw the NII-2 FSB, where multiple poisons are developed in a secret laboratory, it is claimed.

His staff were reportedly directly involved in poisoning Navalny with nerve agent Novichok, and another Putin foe, Vladimir Kara-Murza, it was reported.

A huge FSB operation was reported to have been involved with tailing and poisoning Navalny, which almost led to his death on a flight from Tomsk in Siberia to Moscow.

Kara-Murza was allegedly twice poisoned in 2015 and 2017.

Both men are now held behind bars in Russia as political prisoners, according to human rights organisations and Western governments.

Colonel-General Eduard Chernovoltsev, 52, was in overall charge of NII-2 FSB until he was dismissed by Vladimir Putin (pictured today)

Chernovoltsev oversaw the NII-2 FSB, where multiple poisons are developed in a secret laboratory, it is claimed (pictured: The FSB headquarters in Moscow)

A high-flying agent, Chernovoltsev had been also in charge of the 8th FSB Centre (Information Protection), the FSB Special Equipment Centre and the FSB Special Communications Directorate.

Officially, the General was sent into retirement.

However, reliable sources told The Insider that the Kremlin blamed him for frequent leaks of databases, which allowed journalists to publish their investigations, including those about Putin’s associates.

‘Two years ago Eduard [Chernovoltsev] swore an oath to the country’s leadership that he would block all channels of leaks,’ said a source.

‘But in our leaky system this was almost impossible’.

A separate source told of Chernovoltsev’s alleged private misgivings over Putin’s war which has led to an estimated 100,000-plus Russian fatalities.

A huge FSB operation was reported to have been involved with tailing and poisoning Navalny, which almost led to his death (pictured on a stretcher)

Vladimir Kara-Murza (pictured) was allegedly twice poisoned by Putin’s henchmen in 2015 and 2017

The FSB is one of Putin’s spy services that has been strongly criticised for poor intelligence which led the Russian leader to believe his troops would be welcomed when they invaded in early 2022.

The report also says Chernovoltsev was twice caught by traffic police inspectors when he was driving while intoxicated.

The second time was when he had reached the rank of FSB general.

He refused to undergo a medical examination and he received help in avoiding criminal sanction, it was reported.

Officially, the FSB said he had reached retirement age, said RBC news outlet – yet records show he is only 52, far below the FSB retirement age.

The current FSB director, close Putin crony Alexander Bortnikov, is 71.

The only known picture of Chernovoltsev dates to 2018.

Previously a collage showing members of his poisoning squad was published.

In 2020 he was named on a committee headed by the Russian premier Mikhail Mishustin on the country’s digital development.

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