Marianna Budanovová, wife of Kyrylo Budanov, the head of Ukrainian military intelligence, has reportedly survived a targeted poisoning attempt. The incident involved heavy metals, substances not typically found in everyday life or military operations, suggesting a meticulously planned assault. Despite the gravity of the poisoning, Budanovová is on the path to recovery after concluding the initial phase of treatment. A number of her colleagues, who tested positive for the same poison, are also currently undergoing treatment.
Key Figures in Ukrainian Politics
Marianna Budanovová has been serving as an advisor to the mayor of Kyiv, Vitali Klitschko, since June 2021. Her husband, Kyrylo Budanov, has been leading the military intelligence division since 2020. Budanov's role has made him a significant target for President Putin's regime, with at least ten assassination attempts against him, as stated by Ukrainian military intelligence spokesman Andriy Yusov.
A History of Tensions
In April 2023, a Moscow court issued an arrest warrant for Budanov in connection with an explosion that occurred on the Crimean Bridge last year. This was a move that Budanov took as an affirmation of their efforts, pledging to continue their work. Russian propaganda had previously falsely reported Budanov's death.
Implications of the Poisoning
The poisoning of Budanovová, if confirmed as a deliberate act, represents the most serious targeting of a high-profile Ukrainian leadership figure's family member during the ongoing war in the region. This incident has sparked immediate suspicion in Ukraine that Russia may have been responsible, as Russia's history includes extra-territorial poisonings against its adversaries. The exact nature of the heavy metals that caused the poisoning has not been disclosed.