Time in Yerevan: 11:07:36,   23 January

Austria demands explanations from Russia over espionage scandal

YEREVAN, NOVEMBER 9, ARMENPRESS. Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has demanded Russia to provide “transparent” information about the retired army colonel who is suspected in spying for Russia for a few decades.

“We demand transparent information from the Russian side. The ambassador, or more specifically an authorized representative, because the ambassador isn’t in Austria now, has been summoned to the foreign ministry. We will discuss the remaining issues with our European colleagues,” Kurz told reporters today.

Austrian intelligence services have arrested a retired army colonel in suspicion of espionage, Kronen Zeitung reported citing the defense ministry of Austria.

The retired colonel, 70, is suspected in spying for Russia since late 1990s.

He is believed to have transferred information about the migration crisis, Austrian military aviation and artillery systems to Russian intelligence.

According to the newspaper, the colonel from Salzburg has been paid around 300,000 Euros for his services.

The Russian embassy in Austria refused to give comments on the matter. “No comment,” embassy spokesperson Bulat Khaydarov told TASS.

The Austrian foreign minister has cancelled his upcoming visit to Russia because of the scandal.

Edited and translated by Stepan Kocharyan

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