Russia targets UK interests with arrests of alleged spies

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by KGB_resident, Mar 20, 2008.

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  1. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/03/20/wruss220.xml

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7307114.stm

     
  2. YAY! Cold War part 2

    Good. I've come to the conclusion that the US was better off when Russia was it's single focus.
     
  3. Industrial espionage? Bang to rights I say. Lock um down.
     
  4. There is one delicate detail: both arrested brothers are US citizens. How did they get American citizenship?

    1. They didn't live in the USA 5 yeasr.
    2. They didn't serve in US armed forces.
    3. There is another possibility. They are agents of CIA. Likely it is the true reason.

    And indeed CIA business cards were discovered.

    Meanwhile, our American friends pretend that they are absolutely unaware about American citizenship of the brothers.

    http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/5fac19c2-f698-11dc-bda1-000077b07658.html

     
  5. Well, it is a 'company'.
     

  6. Hm, so in Russia all you need to have happen in order to be charged with espionage is to hold duel citizenship and be in possession of a cia business card? Which I'm sure wasn't in any way planted.

    So the move couldn't possibly be:

    1. Russia illegally stealing foreign held assets within it's borders.

    2. TNK-BP has been at the centre of constant speculation that it is next on Gazprom’s takeover list.

    3. The company was forced to sell its flagship gas venture, the Kovykta gas field in east Siberia, last year to Gazprom after alleged licence violations.

    4. According to the company: ”The company has never countenanced or supported any action designed to contradict or damage the interests of Russia,” the statement said."

    5. The company’s 50 per cent foreign ownership is seen by analysts as an anomaly in Russia after a series of controversial campaigns, including one that forced Royal Dutch Shell to sell control of its Sakhalin-2 oil and gas venture to Gazprom, the state-controlled energy group, after alleged environmental infractions.

    Russia is gobbling up foreign held interests and making up stuff to do it. One time, ok, but there is a definite pattern here.

    Personally I think it's a very bad move. If the US learned anything from it's great depression was that protectionism was what kicked it off. It'll be a very good way to have all kinds of countries stop investing in Russia.

    Russia is basically "stealing" foreign held assets within it's borders.
     
  7. the real motive for this is to cook up an excuse for Gazprom to rip off the Kovykta gas field from TNK-BP.

    Today the Russian environmental authorities said they are going to investigate TNK-BP's operation of its biggest oil field. They say its a routine probe. Just like two years ago when they got stuck into Shell just before it sold its controlling stake in Sakhalin-1 to Gazprom. And the tax claims against Yukos.

    Gazprom has long said it wants Kovykta. The FSB initially said their raid on TNK-BPs HQ on Wednesday was related to the bankruptcy of Sidanko, which once owned this field and was then taken over by TNK. But now they have retracted this statement!

    We've all seen this kind of behaviour before by the Russian government/Gazprom. Why invent silly spy scandals any more? Maybe Joe Public in Moscow buys this sh*t, but they aren't fooling anyone else.

    What really worries me is that these guys don't even seem to care what people think about them anymore. Odd, seeing as they seem to get so upset everytime the international community treats Russia like the guy who has farted in the lift.
     
  8. No, it hasn't sold Kovykta yet.

    But I daresay it will soon! Voluntarily, of course.
     
  9. RP578

    RP578 LE Book Reviewer

    It's been a long time coming. I've felt for a while that the sooner we disengage from Russia the better. They obviously don't like or trust us and frankly are about as appealing chewing cardboard. Besides, you get far better return for your investment in places like China and India.
     
  10. It looks as the brothers indeed violated the law. Even BBC support this supposition

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7307716.stm

    DURA LEX SED LEX (A law is severe but it is a law).

    Foreign businessmen, specialists and the alleged spies know about restrictions of Russian law pretty well.

    Stealing? I would like to tell you a story about real theft.

    In December 1999 Russian tycoons (Alpha group) 'privatised' 50% (state owned) shares of TNK for $130mlns. It was a laughable sum.

    Thieves from Alpha group (Fridman, Aven, Vekselberg) are not fools and as true thieves tried to resold stolen property. And they sold 50% of TNK to BP for $6 Billions in 2003.

    One of the largest Russian oil company TNK-BP was registered in... no not in Moscow but in British Virgin islands.

    Now TNK-BP extracts annually oil that cost no less than $55 Billions. And it is a real theft.

    From my point of view it would be fair to nationalise TNK-BP, return BP $6 blns with good %%, 'return' Alpha group $130mlns (again with %%).

    And it would not be theft but justice.

    As for foregn investments then just yesterday PepsiCo invested $1.4 billions in huge plant that produces juices.
     
  11. In December 1999 Russian tycoons (Alpha group) 'privatised' 50% (state owned) shares of TNK for $130mlns. It was a laughable sum.

    Thieves from Alpha group (Fridman, Aven, Vekselberg) are not fools and as true thieves tried to resold stolen property. And they sold 50% of TNK to BP for $6 Billions in 2003.


    Yes Sergey, but this begs the question, why has Russia waited NINE YEARS to do something about this? And what about all the other scams that were done by other people? I can't help feeling that its only foreigners who are seen as fair game.
    I'd be glad to see all foreign firms pull out of any energy investment in Russia. Let's see how far they get doing Stokman without foreign help.
     
  12. What a load of Bollox,the BBC were reporting the news not supporting the accusation.

    The Soviet Union is alive and well and living in Russia. Normal isolationist crap coming out of the East once again,the sooner someone cuts the rope and lets the whole nation float away from Europe the better!

    Why am I not surprised when a Russian citizen sees nothing wrong with ripping of a western company that has put all their money and resources into developing an oilfield,by "nationlising" it for the good of the Russian nation,anywhere else Sergey that would be called Theft but then again being Russian,and having no ethics or scruples,that wouldn't bother you lot eh? :slow:
     
  13. Mr.Putin himself was an active participant in this theft. In December 1999 he was a PM and signed the privatisation deel. There are rumors that Alpha group actively supported mr.Putin then he was elected for the first time as a president in 2000. Namely mr.Putin approved creation of joint venture TNK-BP in 2003 and allowed to sell 50% of TNK to BP.

    In 1999 Russian tycoons regarded mr.Putin as their obedient puppet but step by step the puppet was turned into a master. And now rather the tycoons serve him. One tycoon (mr.Khodorkovsky) disageed with new situation and ended in the jail. All tycoons are thives. so it is not a hard tast to find violation of laws.

    Mr.Abramovitch for example. A nice cell in the jail is awaiting him long ago.

    As a result, Western firms would be voided lovely profits, EU vould be voided Russian gas. Russian industry would be stimulated to develop own technologies. It is not absolutely impossible, rather it is a question of time and require big money. And now Russia has money.
     
  14. Ah Sergey,

    So the CIA is so hard up that it sends people to work undercover who are dumb enough to keep CIA cards in their house? If these were planted then you have to be slightly suspicious of the other evidence against them. Once again quality Russian justice in action.
     
  15. BP came to rich oilfields that had been developed before. BP paid $6bln. to thieves in fact buying stolen property.

    Many times I have been to the city of Nizhnevartovsk in West Siberia - a capital of TNK. Hundreds thousands of Russians in 80's and 90's were building 300,000 strong city, roads, pipelines, power grids, power stations and substations... -40 C at Winter is not something special here. What namely BP has done? It pumped profits from stolen property that it baught.

    By the way, nationalisation is absolutely lawfull measure. Saudi Arabia and many other Arab countries nationalised all their oilfields. And what? Maybe the West severed all ties with Gulf countries?

    And in the case with Russia there would be a big fuss but I believe that BP would be proposed a fair compensation. Anyway Russian investments was highly profitable.

    There is another scenario. BP and Alpha group could sell both 25% +1 their shares to state run oil company. as a result Russian government would establish control over TNK-BP. Personally I expect that it happened later or sooner... or there would be no alternative to the nationalisation.