The Czech police put two Russian citizens on the wanted list – Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov. This was reported on April 17 on the department’s website.
The police reported that they are wanted in connection with the investigation of the “circumstances of a grave crime.”
According to the Czech police, Boshirov and Petrov were supposed to be in the country in October 2014 – first in Prague, and then in the Moravian-Silesian region and the Zlín region.
It is noted that they used at least two identification cards. At first, these were Russian passports in the name of Alexander Petrov (date of birth – 07/13/1979) and Ruslan Boshirov (04/12/1978). Subsequently, the persons allegedly presented a passport of a citizen of Moldova in the name of Nikolai Popa (18.07.1979) and a Tajik passport issued in the name of Ruslan Tabarov (23.10.1975).
The Czech police refused to inform RIA Novosti about a possible connection between the search for Petrov and Boshirov and the expulsion of 18 Russian diplomats from the country.
“I can’t tell you anything about the possibility of a connection between these cases, nor can I comment on them in any way,” said an employee of the press center of the Czech Police.
Earlier on Saturday, Prime Minister of the Czech Republic Andrei Babish and First Deputy Prime Minister of the Republic Jan Hamacek announced that 18 employees of the Russian diplomatic mission were being expelled from the country. They must leave the country within 48 hours. The expelled diplomats were allegedly identified by the Czech special services as officers of the Russian special services.
For example, according to Reuters, Babiš said that there are “reasonable suspicions” of the involvement of “officers of the Russian military intelligence of the GRU” in the explosion of an ammunition depot in the village of Vrbetice near the town of Zlin in 2014, which killed two people.
No evidence was provided. However, this is not the first unfriendly statement by Babis towards Russia, indicating that Czech President Milos Zeman, known for his pro-Russian views, has opponents in the Czech government. So, in March 2018, Babish did not rule out the possibility of expelling Russian diplomats because of the incident with ex-GRU colonel Sergei Skripal. According to him, Prague could well follow the example of London, which expelled 23 employees of the Russian embassy.
On March 4, 2018, ex-GRU officer Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia were found unconscious in Salisbury, UK. According to the British investigation, they were exposed to a nerve agent of the Novichok class, which was allegedly produced in Russia. The British authorities accused two Russian citizens of attempting to kill them – Alexander Petrov and Ruslan Boshirov, who were called agents of the GRU. The Russians themselves, in an interview with RT TV channel, said that they came to Salisbury as part of a tourist trip and did not know the Skripals.