Is Russia behind the drone flight over Norway?

Is Russia behind the drone flight over Norway?

Nicholas Tonev

Within days, seven Russians were arrested in Norway, notably for flying drones over oil facilities or airports. Among them Andrei Vladimirovich Yakunin, the son of a close friend of Vladimir Putin. Norwegian investigators are trying to find out whether Moscow is behind it.

Tightening the screws on its own territory, the Kremlin continues to threaten Europe, and Norway in particular. Drones have been flying over oil facilities or airports there for a few weeks. Bergen, the country’s second largest city, even had to be closed for a few hours. Norway’s prime minister blames foreign intelligence services and points finger at Moscow. This suspicion of Russia is no accident.

Seven Russians were arrested within days for the same reasons: flying drones when they were forbidden to do so and violating the ban on photography. Cases now handled by Oslo’s counterintelligence.

The son of a close Putin arrested

And among those seven arrested, the last one, arrested on Wednesday, has an unusual background: the name Andrei Vladimirovich Yakunin probably doesn’t mean anything to you, but he is the son of Dmitry Yakunin, a man very close to Vladimir Putin.

A character with an amazing pedigree: a KGB school specializing in flying machines, a role as co-founder of a cooperative with Vladimir Putin in Saint Petersburg, ties to the formidable Tambovskaya mafia, head of Russian Railways thanks to his friend Putin, and finally suspected billions from Olympia to have embezzled in Sochi about the railway…

So why does Andrei Yakunin, binational Briton and Russian, son of one of Putin’s accomplices, find himself in Svalbard flying a drone? Russia mines minerals there. The Russian community includes at least 200 people. But Andrei Yakunin, in principle, heads an investment company associated with Russian Railways, which is run by his father. A mystery that can offer Norwegian investigators weeks of work.


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