The CIA had its hand in the raid on the North Korean embassy in Spain, local media report citing investigation sources. If confirmed, the development might lead to a major spat between Spain and the US.
At least two of the 10 perpetrators, who broke into the embassy, have been identified and are connected with the Central Intelligence Agency, El Pais reported Wednesday. While the US spies have already denied their involvement, they were quite “unconvincing,” government sources told the newspaper.
If the CIA’s role in the whole affair is confirmed, it might lead to a major diplomatic spat between Madrid and Washington, as this is not exactly what one expects from an “ally.” Involvement of common criminals in the incident was ruled out shortly after it happened, as the whole operation resembled a hit job by a “military cell.”
The bizarre – and movie-like – incident occurred on February 22, when a group of men attacked the North Korea’s mission to Spain, located in Madrid. The attackers restrained and gagged the staff and then rummaged through the embassy for some four hours, stealing computers and other electronic devices.
One of the employees managed to escape and alerted the neighbors, who called the police. When law enforcement arrived, however, they were reportedly greeted by an individual, who reassured them everything was fine at the diplomatic facility. Shortly afterwards, the suspects drove out of the embassy in two stolen vehicles and got away, dumping the cars in a street.
Police then discovered the mission’s staff, who were bound, gagged and had bags on their heads. Several diplomats required medical attention after the incident due to minor injuries. While the attack was widely reported by local media, the embassy did not provide any statement.
The perpetrators may have been looking for information on the former ambassador of North Korea to Spain – Kym Hyok Chol. The diplomat served at the facility for years, yet he was expelled back in 2017 amid consecutive nuclear tests held by Pyongyang. He later joined the country’s negotiator team and participated in organizing the Trump-Kim summit in Vietnam – which failed just five days after the Madrid incident.
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