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Russian Commando Teams Targeted Zelensky During Initial Assault On Ukraine

James King, MPA
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In addition to the recently foiled assassination plot, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky was also targeted by Russian commando teams during the initial Russian assault on Ukraine. These attempts on Zelensky’s life occurred in the early stages of the conflict as Russia sought to quickly neutralize Ukraine’s leadership.

The most recent plot broken up by the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU) on Tuesday involved two senior officers both colonels in the Department of State Security. The plan allegedly called for suborning members of Zelensky’s personal protection detail to kidnap and later assassinate him under the cover of Russian missile and drone strikes.

SBU Chairman Lieutenant General Vasyl Malyuk and the head of military intelligence Lieutenant General Kyrylo Budanov were also targeted in the latest plot. Malyuk revealed that the terrorist attack was supposed to be a “gift” for Russian President Vladimir Putin ahead of his Tuesday inauguration for another six-year term.

The ongoing attempts on Zelensky’s life from the initial Russian assault to the most recent assassination plot underscore the persistent threat faced by the Ukrainian president. As the war enters its third year Zelensky remains a primary target for Russian forces seeking to destabilize Ukraine’s leadership and weaken the country’s resolve.