Russian authorities have expelled a man they claim is a CIA agent who was working undercover at the US embassy in Moscow.
Russia’s FSB – or Federal Security Service, which used to be known as the KGB during the Soviet era – claimed to have caught US citizen Ryan C. Fogle red-handed as he tried to turn one of their agents.
Fogle is said to have disguised his appearance and been carrying wigs, sunglasses, instructions on how to recruit Russian citizens and a large amount of cash in euros during a meeting with the Russian intelligence officer.
Footage of the arrest shows Fogle wearing a blond wig and baseball cap.
After questioning, Fogle was handed over to the US embassy. There has been no comment from the embassy or Washington.
Russia’s Foreign Ministry declared Fogle “persona non grata” and ordered him to leave the country. The ministry said: “Such provocative actions in the spirit of the Cold War will by no means promote the strengthening of mutual trust.”
Despite the end of the Cold War, espionage between Washington and Moscow continues and the FSB says these types incidents are not uncommon. People accused of spying are usually expelled or withdrawn from the country.
Even more than two decades after the end of the Cold War, there have been accusations of espionage between the US and Russia in recent years. In 2010, 10 people identified by US intelligence as Russian agents were arrested in the US and deported back to Russia in exchange for four Russians detained for spying for the West.