Ukrainian embassies across Europe receive bloody packages containing ‘animal eyes’


Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba says more than a dozen letters containing explosives or animal parts have been sent to Ukrainian diplomats around the world.

“This campaign is aimed at sowing fear,” Kuleba told CNN’s Matthew Chance in an exclusive interview in Kyiv on Friday.

He added that there have been 17 cases of embassies receiving letter bombs, fake bomb letters or letters containing parts of animals such as cow and pig eyes.

An image of one letter released to CNN showed what officials said was a pig’s eyeball inside an envelope.

“It started with an explosion at the Embassy of Ukraine in Spain,” Kuleba said. “But what happened after this explosion was even more strange, I might even say sickening.”

Kuleba was referring to an explosion at the Ukrainian embassy in Madrid on Wednesday, injuring one Ukrainian employee who was handling a letter sent to the country’s ambassador to Spain. Spanish authorities said Thursday that another letter bomb was sent to the country’s prime minister and the US embassy last week.

The embassies of Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland, Croatia, Italy, Austria in Kyiv and the consulates general in Naples and Krakow also received suspicious packages, Oleh Nikolenko, spokesman for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine, said on Facebook on Friday.

The packages are “soaked in a liquid of a characteristic color and have a corresponding smell,” he said. “We are examining the meaning of this message.”

Ukraine has put all its foreign diplomatic posts under tight security after the suspicious mail delivery.

The Ukrainian consulate in the southeastern Czech Republic city of Brno was briefly evacuated on Friday after receiving a suspicious package containing animal tissue, Czech police said in a tweet on Friday.

When asked who he thought was behind the letters, Kuleba told CNN, “I’m tempted to name Russia directly, because first you have to answer the question, who benefits?”

“Perhaps this terror response is Russia’s answer to the diplomatic terror we have created for Russia on the international stage, and this is how they are trying to fight back while the real diplomatic battles are being lost one by one.”

He said he thought Russia was either directly responsible or “an accomplice”. [with] Trying to spread Russian reason and fear.

“The conclusions will be made by the investigators, but I think these two versions make a lot of sense.”

CNN has reached out to the Kremlin for comment on the articles.

Kuleba earlier called on foreign governments to ensure maximum security of Ukrainian diplomatic institutions in accordance with the Vienna Convention on Diplomatic Relations.

Nikolenko said that in addition to the suspicious packages, the Vatican ambassador’s residence had been vandalized and the Ukrainian embassy in Kazakhstan received a report of a bomb threat, which was later unconfirmed.

Nikolenko also stated that the Ukrainian Embassy in the United States received a letter with a photocopy of an article critical of Ukraine. He added that most of the envelopes were sent from Europe.

Czech police tweeted that the consulate in Brno and its immediate surroundings, including a kindergarten, were evacuated on Friday. After investigating the package, the police said that it did not contain any explosives, and stated that they had no information to indicate that the people in the consulate or the surrounding area were in any danger.

“Preliminary analysis suggests that the package contains animal tissue. A detailed analysis will now be conducted at the labs,” the police tweeted.


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