PRAGUE, October 27 (RIA Novosti) — The number of Russian spies in the Czech Republic was “very high” in 2013, the country’s national intelligence agency said in its annual report on Monday.
“Both the Russian and the Chinese embassy employ intelligence officers serving under diplomatic cover. In 2013, the number of such officers at the Russian embassy was extremely high. Moreover, further intelligence officers traveled to the Czech Republic individually as tourists, experts, academics, businessmen etc.,” the Czech Security Information Service (SIS) said.
“The Russians and the Chinese focus mainly on journalists, members of parliamentary political parties, civil servants, lobbyists, networking organizations, the management of employer or employee organizations, activists and non-governmental organizations,” the report reads.
According to SIS, Russian intelligence services are working to promote Russian economic interests in the Czech Republic, while Chinese intelligence services attempt to “make use of economic arguments” to promote Chinese political interests. The report noted the growing market shares of China’s tech giants Huawei and ZTE are as “potential threats” to the Czech Republic.
The alleged threats posed by Russia and China were largely ignored at the latest Prague Security Conference, the Czech intelligence agency said. Meanwhile, the United States’ intelligence activities and “betrayal of its partners”, revealed by whistleblower Edward Snowden, were met with either silent approval or applause.