Russian envoy says hopes ‘spying’ case won’t hurt ties

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(ANSA) – ROME, APR 2 – Russia’s ambassador to Italy on Friday
said he hoped a case of alleged spying in Rome would not hurt
relations between the two countries.
    On Tuesday night an Italian navy captain, Walter Biot, was
caught allegedly passing NATO telecoms documents to a Russian
embassy official for 5,000 euros.
    The embassy official and the Russian naval attaché have been
expelled from Italy in the case.
    “This incident arouses deep sorrow, as does the decision by the
Italian side to declare two officials ‘persona non grata’ ,”
Ambassador Sergey Razov said in an interview on Rainews24.
    “As I stressed during my meeting with the heads of the Italian
foreign ministry, we trust that this incident will not
negatively influence the broadly constructive relations between
our two countries, you have to have a wider view, they are
broadly articulated relations that cannot absolutely be reduced
to single unpleasant episodes”, said Razov.
    The judge who remanded Biot in custody Thursday night said
Tuesday’s incident was not an isolated one and that he had
unscrupulously betrayed Italian institutions by using four
smartphones and other ruses to pass many top secret documents to
the Russians.
    Bio’s wife said he had been driven to take Russian money because
he was desperate over family finances, unable to meet mortgage
payments and fund the activities of their four children, one of
them seriously handicapped, as well as their four dogs. (ANSA).


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