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Ukraine Says Man Arrested In 2017 Attack On Chechen Accused Of Putin Plot

Updated

Adam Osmayev talks to reporters in Kyiv in January 2016.

Ukrainian authorities said police have arrested the suspected planner of a 2017 attack on a Chechen who was accused by Russian authorities of plotting to kill President Vladimir Putin.

Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said in a January 12 post on Facebook that the unidentified man was arrested along with an unspecified number of other people who were also allegedly linked to the October 2017 attack on Adam Osmayev.

Osmayev was wounded in the October 2017 attack on Kyiv's outskirts that killed his wife, Amina Okuyeva.

National Police chief Ihor Klymenko the same day said the coordinator of the attack on the Chechen couple was part of a group of seven people, some of whom were arrested in September on suspicion of carrying out two other killings.

Four months prior to that attack, Osmayev was targeted in a separate incident during a meeting with a Russian man who was posing as a French journalist.

The man then opened fire as they sat in a car, wounding Osmayev, he later told police. His wife, who was also in the car at the time, returned fire, wounding the alleged attacker.

Ukrainian police later identified the alleged shooter in the June attack as Artur Denisultanov-Kurmakayev, a Russian national who went by the nickname "Dingo." Authorities were looking into how he obtained a Ukrainian passport.

Denisultanov was turned over to Russian authorities on December 29, 2019, in exchange for a number of Ukrainian prisoners held in Russian detention or by Russia-backed separatist fighters in eastern Ukraine. It was one of two major prisoner swaps that Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy has pushed through as part of an effort to ease tensions with Russia.

Osmayev first made headlines in Ukraine in February 2012 when he was detained and charged with illegal explosives possession, damaging private property, and forgery.

At the request of the Russian authorities, he was charged with plotting to kill Putin, and Moscow sought his extradition.

Kyiv ultimately refused to extradite him, and he was then released from Ukrainian custody in November 2014, after more than 2 1/2 years in jail.

Three months after his release, Osmayev assumed command of a volunteer battalion fighting separatists in eastern Ukraine.

His wife, Okuyeva, gained renown working as a medic during the street protests in Kyiv that culminated in violent clashes with police in February 2014, and the ouster of then-President Viktor Yanukovych.

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