Kaliningrad’s well-placed ally

Series Title
Series Details 08/03/01, Volume 7, Number 10
Publication Date 08/03/2001
Content Type

Date: 08/03/01

Russian President Vladimir Putin is reportedly determined to raise the issue of Kaliningrad when he meets EU leaders at the Stockholm summit later this month.

But it seems his interest in the ailing enclave, which will be completely surrounded by Union territory after enlargement, could be motivated by more than simply political factors.

Our Russian spies suggest a hidden female force is at work, urging the former KGB chief to make Kaliningrad a priority in Moscow's dealings with Brussels. And now she can be unmasked - it is none other than Putin's devoted wife Lyudmila.

The former air hostess grew up in the enclave city and has always retained an affection for it. But don't expect the Kremlin's first lady to speak publicly on the subject; she had to pass stringent KGB vetting after her marriage and knows when to keep her lips firmly sealed.

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