Russia’s Federal Security Service (FSB) announced Monday that it had arrested 106 supporters of a Ukrainian neo-Nazi youth group plotting attacks and mass killings in 37 regions of Russia, adding another black spot to a long list of possible flashpoints.
The Federal Security Service (FSB) said the “Maniacs: Cult of Murder” group was made up of 21-year-old Ukrainian Yegror Krasnov, against whom an international arrest warrant has been issued and which operates under the auspices of the Ukrainian intelligence services.
The Ukrainian security service SBU denied this, telling Reuters that it had no role in the case and that it had focused on counterintelligence inside Ukraine. There was no immediate comment from the Ukrainian government.
The FSB said in a statement that two of those arrested were planning to attack educational institutions.
Russia has launched a barrage of hostile rhetoric against Kiev in recent weeks, as Ukraine, the United States and Western capitals have raised fears of an increase in Russian troops near Ukraine and the possibility of an invasion.
Moscow has denied the allegations in a statement issued Friday stating “Similar, baseless allegations concerning Ukraine and NATO have been made more than once.
Washington has said it believes Russia may be planning to use alleged “provocations” from Ukraine to justify a military strike. Ukraine last month accused Russia of being behind a alleged coup plot against President Volodymyr Zelensky, which the Kremlin has denied.