Reserve Major General of the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) Viktor Yagun considered that a device recently discovered in the office of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine (AFU), Valery Zaluzhny, was an imitation.

"As far as I know, not only were the recording media missing, but the power cells as well. It was a simulated device, possibly intended for actions other than recording – perhaps for provocation," explained the major general on Radio Svoboda.

Yagun emphasized that it is "impossible a priori" to eavesdrop on specific conversations or obtain classified information during a meeting in the commander-in-chief's office due to the presence of special equipment that blocks any recording or video devices in the room.

Before any meeting, a thorough inspection is reportedly conducted and Yagun highlighted that the device was discovered before Zaluzhny entered.

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"I don't really understand what this person or persons who did it hoped for," Yagun said.

He suggested two possibilities: i) either an amateur who lacks understanding of the situation (a scenario Yagun finds unlikely); or ii) individuals who knew the purpose behind their actions.

"This is [about] provocation. Sometime later, they may attempt to release audio recordings created with artificial intelligence, featuring a voice similar to Zaluzhny's. This would reignite the topic of confrontation between military and civilian authorities in Ukraine. Who stands to benefit from this? Likely the enemy. Let them investigate," the general remarked.

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Responding to a journalist's question about whether this implies that someone within the special services gained access to the future office of the commander-in-chief and orchestrated a provocation, Yagun clarified that any equipment used by the SBU is numbered and registered to a specific employee and unit.

He noted that, during the investigation, it might be revealed that the equipment is specialized and manufactured in a designated institute rather than "bought somewhere [such as] on AliExpress." But if some elements can be purchased, they are still processed and numbered in accordance with legal requirements.

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He also mentioned that access to such premises is highly restricted. Among the individuals in the entourage of the AFU’s commander-in-chief are SBU employees officially assigned there to facilitate communication between the Security Service and the commander-in-chief due to the ongoing war, necessitating coordinated actions.

"These are officials. I don't believe they would take the responsibility of planting something and eavesdropping."

Yagun suggests that it is more likely that outsiders were involved, possibly affiliated with those who have access to the office.

"I want to emphasize again: this circle is very, very limited, and there is detailed information about those with access to enter and leave," clarified the SBU general.

He added that the circle consists of no more than 10 people.

The major general explained that there is a protocol for inspecting such premises, making it possible to determine when equipment was placed there. According to Yagun, an impartial investigation should identify the owner and origin of the equipment, determining whether it is a mere imitation.

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Meanwhile, media outlet RBC-Ukraine, citing an unnamed source in military circles, reported that the discovered devices were allegedly made using elements of an unknown model, making it difficult to identify the installer.

The SBU general clarified that if such devices are purchased on AliExpress, identification becomes impossible.

"They are prohibited by our legislation, but if someone is determined to obtain such things, it is possible. They are compact, not very large, so they can be ordered and imported from abroad," Yagun stressed.

He emphasized that technical examinations will take at least a month.

"When asked, 'Is it a failure if an [enemy] agent was found in the Security Service?' this, on the contrary, is a plus, because they detected this agent, they did not allow him to work there, and did not allow him to use his capabilities to harm Ukraine," noted the major general.

In conclusion, Yagun highlighted that Russia is actively exploiting this situation.

"The enemy revels in the details, depicting everything as bad within us. Everything should be scrutinized through the lens of who benefits first. At this stage, it is possible that there are such profiteers in Ukraine as well, but the vast majority have so far taken advantage of this in Russia," Yagun concluded.

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Earlier, Zaluzhny confirmed to the media the reports that a listening device was discovered in one of the offices available for his use. On Sunday, this was reported by several Ukrainian mass media outlets.

Later, the SBU disclosed that a criminal case is being investigated under Article 359 part 2 (illegal acquisition, sale, or use of special technical means of obtaining information) of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

At the same time, the SBU stated that the equipment was not found directly in Zaluzhny's office but in another room available to him. It was reported that the device was not working.

Zaluzhny stressed that the identified device was not the sole discovery. The AFU General Staff, in a Facebook post, reported, "Eavesdropping devices were installed in offices designated for the work of the Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and the staff employed to support his activities."

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