Without further ado, here is my translation of the VZGLIAD online newspaper interview with fugitive faux-assassin Vyacheslav Pivovarnik:
VZGLIAD: Where are you right now? Can you say?
Pivovarnik: Let’s just say I’m somewhere in Europe. Without going into any details…
VZGLIAD: How do you relate to the fact that you are reckoned to be the guy who ordered Babchenko’s murder?
Pivovarnik: The whole case against me is based on German’s testimony in the courtroom. Other than that, there is nothing. This was a kangaroo court. The real story was covered up. Nobody knows anything.
VZGLIAD: And yet German named you as the guy who ordered the hit.
Pivovarnik: He made a deal. He received a ridiculous sentence of 4.5 years. For murder!
VZGLIAD: In other words, you assert that all of this was a special ops of the SBU. How did it all begin?
Pivovarnik: It was a long process. Approximately in April of 2018 the SBU leadership made a decision that Babchenko would become a sacrificial victim. The first sacrifice.
VZGLIAD: You have claimed that there was a list of 47 people?
Pivovarnik: They weren’t getting the resonance that they needed. They needed conspiracies and intrigue — that’s why they created the list. At first 30 people, then 47. I have no clue how they picked the members of the list. In the beginning they were promising a sensational story, and then they made everything secret, and swept it into the bushes.
VZGLIAD: Did you order this hit, were you the hit man, were you the middleman? What exactly was your role?
Pivovarnik: I was not the hit man. I was not anybody. I was just a person that they could connect with Moscow. My role was different. I operated on the territory of the Russian Federation, and my job there was to motivate and document the outcome, assuming a positive outcome in the organization of this affair, as well as others.
VZGLIAD: Could you explain that more concretely? I don’t really understand.
Pivovarnik: Well, how are they supposed to prove the “Russian trace” without actual Russians? When they present this case to international organizations and to the media? For this reason they worked out an operation to utilize SBU agents stationed inside Russia. Those agents were supposed to organize everything: Earn peoples trust, offer financial incentives.
VZGLIAD: Why did they pick Babchenko to be their sacrificial lamb?
Pivovarnik: Don’t ask me. If I had to guess, I would say his critical [against Russia] opinions sometimes rising to the level of a miasma. They believed that his rants had seriously wounded the ruling elites in Moscow.
VZGLIAD: Tell me about your work.
Pivovarnik: Like with any secret agent, I was tied to my curator.
VZGLIAD: Who is your curator?
Pivovarnik: Andrei Kapustin. Currently he is an agent of the 3rd level of the GUR [main office of Ukrainian military intelligence], but in the past he worked for counter-intel within the SBU. I have been working with him for a long time. My specialties were tariffs, logistics, contraband — under the curatorship of the SBU; and I also worked in the sphere of weapons exports in the years 2010-2012, right up until the Maidan.
VZGLIAD: Are you acquainted with Boris German, and if so, for how long?
Pivovarnik: We have been friends and have worked together since 2009, our families are very close.
VZGLIAD: In the courtroom German also suddenly announced, unexpectedly, that he is an agent of the SBU, or even an associate of the SBU.
Pivovarnik: It’s true. He was set up. Just like me.
VZGLIAD: But German also testified in court, that you work for Putin’s personal Fund. He said you were responsible for disorders in the Ukraine, and for political assassinations. Why would he say that?
Pivovarnik: I repeat once again, that he [German] was not testifying of his own free will, I understand him completely, those guys can make you testify against your own mother. That’s the way the system works.
VZGLIAD: Are you saying that his claim, that you work for Putin’s fund, is not true?
Pivovarnik: I worked in Russia for the interests of the Ukraine, in part for the interests of Ukrainian special services.
VZGLIAD: Are you still in contact with your handler?
Pivovarnik: Our last communication was that same summer. Once the assignment had been given, this project to create this provocation by staging the murder of a journalist, then my job was to play the role of a man with lots of connections and resources. And then our own agency tossed us under the bus. They needed some patsies.
VZGLIAD: Did you go to Russia after this incident with Babchenko?
Pivovarnik: I was already in Russia! And after that I left Russia. I fled to Europe. Some friends hid me there, my own people. And then I left again. Right now my situation is not any better…
Thus ends the interview. The VZGLIAD reporter goes on to provide more details about the case, based on documentation provided by the fugitive Pivovarnik…
[to be continued]