“Yes, I am an agent: an agent for peace, a Europe without fascism, an agent for minority rights and a united Europe,” Zdanoga said in front of the European Parliament in his first public intervention since the revelations about what he was told. Cooperation with the FSB.
According to EFE agency, the MEP accused of spying for Russia for at least 13 years made no specific reference in the information pointing to his contacts with FSB agents.
In the debate on Russian intervention in the European Union (EU), scheduled following the case, among other things, the Latvian MEP wanted to “apologise for not being a successful agent” and promised those responsible for European policy for the region “that they would voluntarily come” to the EU-Russia forums organized by him. Thanks for making them”.
“In 2004, the EU saw Russia as a strategic partner. Ten years later, there was an official shift towards Russia: from partnership and cooperation to important contacts,” Zdanoka said.
However, the MEP stressed that “it is impossible to resolve the conflict over Ukraine if the EU acts against Russia”. “After two decades, the world is now losing its chance for peace,” he added.
In response to Zdanoka's statements, Lithuanian MEP Rasa Jukneviciene, who intervened shortly after, said the Latvian was “an agent of peace, just like Putin”.
A few hours earlier, when he arrived at the Hemicycle for the voting session, the MEP responded silently to journalists' questions about his contacts with the FSB, including one asked in Russian.
The European Parliament is investigating links between Zdanoka and the FSB after the allegations became public, and in the coming weeks, could announce sanctions against the Latvian MEP for violating the code of conduct, parliamentary sources told EFE.
Tatjana Zdanoka admitted to being in contact with a man identified by investigators as an FSB agent between 2004 and 2013, but denied knowing his connections with Russian secret services.
In Latvia, the MEP has been considered an agent of Russian influence since its entry into politics in the late 1980s.
With a mathematical background, Zdanoka, born in Riga in 1950, was a member of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union between 1971 and 1991 (he says something on his European Parliament page) and was initially active in supporting Russian interests. In the 1990s, after Latvia's independence.
Zdanoka received Latvian citizenship in 1996 and speaks Russian, Latvian, English and French.
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