Marianna Budanova, the wife of Kyrylo Budanov, Chief of Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence, was poisoned with heavy metals, according to intelligence sources cited in a report by the Ukrainian publication Babel. Andrii Yusov, a Ukraine Defense Intelligence representative, subsequently verified this report.
Marianna is presently hospitalized due to a prolonged deterioration in her condition, nearing the completion of her treatment course, and is set to undergo continued medical supervision. “The substances involved are not commonly used in daily life or military affairs, and their presence suggests a deliberate attempt to poison a specific individual,” noted the intelligence sources.
The suspected poisoning of Budanov’s wife is thought to have taken place “through food,” according to sources within the security bloc, as reported by Ukrainian news outlet Ukrainska Pravda. Additionally, these sources confirmed that “several other intelligence employees have also confirmed the poisoning.”
Former head of the Foreign Intelligence Service of Ukraine, Valerii Kondratiuk, revealed that among the heavy metals discovered in the affected individuals, arsenic was identified, in a comment made to Radio Free Europe.
“At the moment, it’s not clear whether the poison was directly in the food, and the investigation will have to answer how these heavy metals entered the body of Budanova’s wife and the employees of the Main Intelligence Directorate,” Kondratiuk stated, emphasizing the need for the Security Service of Ukraine to initiate a criminal investigation into the appearance of this information.
Kondratiuk also assumed that Russian special services could be behind the poisoning of Budanov’s wife and the intelligence officers; however, this version has not been officially confirmed. It is worth noting that Ukrainian intelligence had previously reported more than a dozen assassination attempts on Kyrylo Budanov, Chief of Ukraine’s Defense Intelligence.
The New York Times highlighted Russia’s history of using poisoning as a tool for revenge and eliminating enemies. The poisoning of former Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko in 2004, according to the publication, was attributed to Russian special services.