What's believed to be a recording of a phone call held in 2014 between Vladimir Putin's political operative in Ukraine Viktor Medvedchuk and Vladislav Surkov, Putin's aide in Russia, has been leaked to the Ukrainian media.
The leak was originally published by TV Channel 24.
Vladislav Surkov allegedly reached out to Viktor Medvedchuk to clarify the statement by then energy minister Yuriy Prodan who said Ukraine would not negotiate with pro-Russian militants on the purchase of coal. In response, Medvedchuk laughed and said that the minister had allegedly already filed a resignation letter.
Cooperation with Russian proxies in Donbas
Medvedchuk. Hello. Hi, Slava.
Surkov. To be honest, I've sort of already figured things out. What I wanted to know about is that statement claiming no coal will be purchased there.
M. Oh, I've already spent three hours speaking with the "parallel man". He says: "Come on, listen, this is...".
Read alsoYouTube shuts down Medvedchuk's TV channelsS. Uh-huh (laughs).
M. He already wrote a resignation letter the day before yesterday… Are you there?
S. Yes, so I've been told... I've been told (laughs restrainedly).
M. No, no, you know what I said? I said: "Listen, yesterday he makes a statement – and then Zakarchenko's people snub our man, so our man has to go back. What the f*ck is this sh*t?! How long will this sh*t last?!
S. Yes, yes, exactly. That's right (laughs).
M. I'd to tell you something else, Slava, now that you've called.
S. Yes, uh-huh.
M. So I just saw the "big guys", yes. Well, the local "big guys". And we talked for a long time – several hours – and he said that there had been this conversation yesterday, right? And so they said that you have to come, right?
M. Uh-eh. Wait a minute, Slava.
M. (Speaking on another phone) Yes ... Yes ... Hello ... good afternoon. Can you put me in touch with Petr Alekseevich [Poroshenko]? Get back to me then. Thanks.
M. I just wanted to call Poroshenko. You hear me? He says there's an instruction for you [Surkov] to come. Moreover, what's important, this should be done beforeFriday, because on Friday night they will talk on the phone before the chief goes on a trip you know where...
M. So I reported that you can only do that Monday. Call and ask to tell Ostrovenko if he could come there tomorrow, so that we could find things out there before the conversation.
M. No, no, I'm just informing you.
S. I reported to my chief there. I'll be there on Monday. Everything's fine.
M. Uh-huh. That's it then.
S. So I'm going. However, I have no deadlines here at all. I don't see any urgent need ... as if something escalated there. But what do we have? We're at a dead end. Well, now we're going to get out of it slowly. No big problem here.
On Trilateral Contact Group
M: And the second thing – regarding the Contact Group. It must be convened tomorrow or the day after tomorrow.
M: But they said that now there will be their representatives, not leaders, attending. And this angered our people in the Contact Group.
S: Yeah, right. Who?
M: Well, Kuchma, for example
S: Zubarova or what? (laughs).
M: Good job! How did you guess? Slava, you do know your people! (Laughs).
S: Yes, yes (laughs).
M: You got me, right?
S: Vitya, I see that they were outraged, but there's no other way. Because they are robbers and murderers, according to Ukraine, so to speak.
M: Terrorists! Murderers! (Laughs).
S: Terrorists, killers, robbers! What else [do they call them]?
S: Gangsters whom someone is trying to crown...
M: Look, I don't know how they'd been meeting with them previously – I have questions. (Laughs)
S: Yes. Well, the group's contacts will, of course, continue. First of all, they will now appoint authorized representatives. And then…
M: Slava, I'm just explaining to you that I have some information! (Laughs)
S: What am I, stopping you or what? You are free to speak up if you want. This is not what I meant...
M: Yes, please.
S: I'm explaining to you – you understand everything anyway. I just react, as if I mentally convey this to those with whom you speak there. That...
M: Yes, they will now be call me regarding this. I'll relay the info.
S: We have a clean proposal – no deviations here. They will now appoint authorized representatives, and the group will meet.
S: Moreover, even my boss told me – and you can also relay that – I was told to attend the group meeting. And I'm going there, too.
M: Oh really? They're even sending you? Wow. Got it.
S: So yeah. So they shouldn't be whining over some wrong representatives of the "rebels" attending.
S: But on the other hand, Slava will be there, you tell them. (Laughs)
M: I get it, Slava. Are you there?
M: Now this, one more question for you. Forgot to ask you yesterday.
M: Do you remember the issue with Zaruba? This Vladlen guy? In Krasnodon...
S: Yes, I conveyed the signals. I conveyed those signals...
S: Now, Vitia, I'll get a feedback first. It's sort of messed up here.
M: You call me. Why? Because, well, really, from there come such... I don't know, maybe they're trying to fool me?
S: Yes, yes. Listen, well, if ... if he's got into this hell of a situation somewhere, how is he sending you textx? I don't quite get it.
M: He gets the phone from the guards. At least this could be the case.
S: (restrained laughing).
M: Don't you worry so much.
S: (restrained laughing).
S: ZaruDA? Yes?
M: Zaruba, Vladlen Viktorovich. Krasnodon detention center.
S: I conveyed this, okay. Uh-huh ... Okay, okay.
On political strategist working for Yulia Tymoshenko
M: And one more question, if I may…
M: Do you know Alexey Sytnik? Or Sitnikov?
S: I do.
M: Ueah, a political scientist, political strategist.
S: I know Lyosha, yes.
M: What is he all about?
S: I haven't seen him for quite a while. He's sort of a really expensive technologist. More talk than result, I'll tell you that.
S: He is a high-profile guy in Russia, with reputation. Believed to be one of those smart ones, you know? But since, as you might guess, I know this market well…
M: Yes, well, that's why I'm asking you.
S: Yes. So he hasn't had any outstanding achievements. I'm telling you for sure.
S: He worked for [Yulia] Tymoshenko, by the way, if we talk about your [country].
M: Yes, yes, I know he did cause I even met him back then.
S: He worked there, and quite successfully, they say. Moreover, he's still in direct contact with her, still servicing her in some way.
S: I don't know how she assessed the results of the elections, the latest ones, and what's her attitude to him now. Anyway, until recently, he had been worked with her.
M: Uh-huh. Gotcha...
S: So yeah, this is what I know 100%, it's just that...
M: Okay, I'll tell you later why I'm inquiring.
S: Okay, alright then.
M: Alright. So long, bye.
S: Thanks, bye.