'Kremlin spy' fell to death from embassy building before body whisked off to Russia with no autopsy
THE body of a suspected Kremlin spy with family links to the FSB was returned to Russia, with no autopsy, a day after he apparently fell to his death from
Kirill Zhalo, 35, (above) was found dead outside the Russian Embassy in central Berlin at 7.20am on October 19 by German security guards.
He was pronounced dead at the scene. It was reported that he appears to have fallen to his death from the upper floor of the building.
No official cause of death was been given after the Russian embassy repatriated his body to Russia the following day without an autopsy.
Germany cannot investigate the death due to Zhalo's diplomatic status.
The Russian embassy described the death as a tragic accident, saying it would not comment further due to "ethical reasons." The embassy said in a statement: "The procedures related to repatriating the diplomat's body back to the homeland were promptly settled with responsible German law-enforcement and medical authorities in accordance with current practices."
The investigative websites Bellingcat and The Insider said Zhalo was the son of prominent FSB officer Lieutenant General Alexei Zhalo.
Zhalo Senior is head of the FSB's Office for the Protection of the Constitutional System, which has been implicated in numerous assassination plots including the failed poisoning of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny.
Zhalo Senior is also deputy director of the FSB's Second Service, which was linked to the 2019 assassination of Georgian asylum seeker and former Chechen rebel commander Zelimkhan Khangoshvili, who was shot twice in the head in Berlin's Kleiner Tiergarten park as he went for a run on August 23 2019. Vadim Krasikov is currently in jail in Berlin accused of state-mandated murder over the shooting.
There is evidence to suggest he was in contact with FSB operatives in the run-up to Khangoshvili's death.
Zhao Junior served as Third Secretary to Russia's permanent representation to the United Nations in Vienna from 2013 until 2019, before moving to Berlin in June 2019 to be a diplomat, two months before Khangoshvili was killed. German security services suspect his diplomatic role was a cover for his work as a spy.
Exiled Russian journalist Roman Dobrokhotov, editor of The Insider, claimed he was likely murdered.
Mr Dobrokhotov suggested Zhalo Jr had been involved in or knew about the alleged murder of Chechen commander Khangoshvili.
Mr Dobrokhotov suugested that as part of the investigation into the death of Mr Khangoshvili, - it was plausible that Zhalo Jr had been approached by German 'law enforcement agencies'.