Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky expressed his delight on Tuesday after Kiev’s successor to the Soviet-era KGB arrested the country’s most prominent opposition leader.
The President shared a photo of his handcuffed rival Viktor Medvedchuk on social media, with the caption: “A special operation was carried out by the SBU. Well done! Details to follow.”
Medvedchuk heads the second largest party in the national parliament, the “Opposition Platform – For Life.” He was previously placed under house arrest, last year, as part of Zelensky’s clampdown on dissent, which was granted tacit approval by the regime’s Western supporters.
Formed in 1991, to replace the KGB, the SBU is Ukraine’s main intelligence and security agency.
Medvedchuk, who opposed the 2014 Kiev Maidan, and believes the country’s Western turn to be detrimental to Ukraine’s interests, has led his party since 2018. He previously served as Chief of Staff to former President Leonid Kuchma, in the early 2000s.
Some Western commentators have labelled him as Vladimir Putin’s “closest ally in Ukraine.” However, the Russian President has described Medvechuk as a “Ukrainian nationalist.”