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Leonid Shebarshin, the Former Ex-Chief of Foreign Intelligence Service, Shot Himself

Leonid Shebarshin, the Former Ex-Chief of Foreign Intelligence Service, Shot Himself
31.03.2012

The body of 77-year-old former head of KGB Foreign Intelligence branch of the USSR was found today in own apartment in the central Moscow street – 2ay Tverskaya-Yamskaya. Ceremonial gun was found next to the body of L.Shebarshin. According to preliminary data, he committed suicide. Investigation is trying to reveal all circumstances of the event.

Suicide note was found in his apartment. Leonid Shebarshin wrote on a paper with a simple pencil: “On duty across SVR 4293593”. Leonid Shebarshin put spectacles, weapon and certificate of the veteran of Foreign Intelligence Service on the diary. After that he shot himself in the head. Next day, on March 30, his body was found by daughter-in-law who came to visit him.

Earlier a number of mass media wrote that Shebarshin could have committed suicide because of illness. However people who saw him shortly before the death don't confirm that Shebarshin looked sick or suppressed.

Check upon possible suicide of the general Leonid Shebarshin is being carried out. Procedural decision will be made based on the results of check begun by Tverskoj Interdistrict Investigative Department of the Main Investigative Directorate of Investigation Committee of Russia in Moscow.

Colleagues and experts of investigation called Shebarshin the first true professional at the head of the Soviet investigation and the last professional in KGB management.

- Shebarshin’s death once and for ever will get epithet "mysterious" regardless of the procedural decision which Investigation Committee will make, - editor-in-chief of Forum.msk Anatoly Baranov considers. – None of former employees of Foreign Intelligence Service whom we addressed for comments agreed to tell anything. Symptomatically.


Leonid Shebarshin was born on March, 24th, 1935 in Moscow.

He left secondary school with silver medal in 1952 and entered the Moscow Institute of Oriental Studies (nowadays The Institute of Asian and African Studies within the Moscow State University), Indian department. Due to the closing of the institute in 1954 he continued his study on the third year of the Eastern faculty of MGIMO.

In October, 1958 he began to work in Pakistan as the assistant of embassy of the USSR. In 1962 he finished his business trip as the third secretary of embassy and was taken to work in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the USSR in the department of South-East Asia.

In 1962 he was invited to the First Head Directorate of KGB of the USSR, he took service in a rank of junior lieutenant and occupied position of the deputy officer.

Having passed a year of training in investigation school he was sent for reconnaissance work to Pakistan under diplomatic cover. In 1968 Shebarshin came back to Moscow.

Then he passed a year of retraining on advanced courses for key personnel.

In the beginning of 1971 he was sent as the deputy resident of KGB to India. In 1975 Shebarshin headed residency in this country. Returned to Moscow in April, 1977.

In 1979-1983 he worked as resident of KGB in Iran.

In 1987 Shebarshin was appointed the deputy chief of PGU KGB USSR. In February, 1989 he gets an appointment of the vice-chairman of KGB of the USSR - the chief of the First Head Directorate of KGB of the USSR.

After putsch of 1991 within two days - from August, 22 to August, 23 - Shebarshin headed KGB of the USSR.

Since September, 1991 Shebarshin was in resignation.



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