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Ukrainian peace negotiator shot dead amid claims he was a Russian spy

A Ukrainian peace negotiator has been shot dead ahead of the latest round of talks to end the war amid claims he was a Russian spy.

Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence said Denis Kireev, 45, was a spy and former banker who was killed during an operation to ‘defend the nation’.

After his death, the government hailed him as a ‘hero’ but MPs claimed he was shot and killed by Ukraine’s security service after resisting arrest on suspicion of ‘treason’.

Mr Kireev was pictured sat on the Ukrainian side of the negotiating table during last week’s peace talks with Russia on February 28, despite not being on the official delegation list, and his role at the summit is unclear.

Both Russia and Ukraine have made claims about his alleged spying activities, each blaming him of working for the other side.

Denis Kireev, 45, was shot and killed yesterday after he was reportedly suspected of spying on behalf of the Russians

Russian newspaper Pravda reported that Ukraine’s security service had ‘clear evidence’ of his suspected treason, which included telephone conversations.

An official statement from Ukraine’s Ministry of Defence said: ‘During the execution of special tasks, three spies were killed – employees of the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Internal Affairs.

Photographs were posted online yesterday allegedly showing Mr Kireev dead before rumours that he was spying for Russia began circulating.

Russia claimed he was killed by the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU), while senior Ukrainian politicians claimed he died while in SBU detention.

Meanwhile, Prime Minister Boris Johnson has drawn up a six-point plan to defeat Vladimir Putin as he moves to assume leadership of global efforts to end the horror in Ukraine.

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