A Russian diplomat was found dead below a third-floor window of the Russian embassy in Berlin.

The victim was later identified as Kirill Zhalo, 35, the son of a key Russian intelligence officer, German newspaper Der Spiegel said. Per their website, German authorities suspect Zhalo was a spy operating under cover of a second secretary.

As Daily Mail reported, German guards assigned to protect the building discovered Kirill Zhalo, 35, lifeless outside the building in central Berlin at 7.20 a.m. on Oct. 19. Medics were summoned, but they were unable to help him.

As per standard protocol, there was no local police investigation or autopsy, and the body was transferred to Moscow the next day.

Independent investigative websites, Bellingcat and The Insider, identified Zhalo as the son of prominent FSB officer Lieutenant General Alexei Zhalo. Data from leaked car registration databases reveal the two men shared addresses, first in a house in Rostov-on-Don, southern Russia, and later in Moscow.

Alexei Zhalo is the head of the FSB’s Office for the Protection of the Constitutional System, linked to several assassination attempts. They include the failed poisonings of Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, writer Dmitry Bykov in Russia 2019, and two failed poisonings of politician and writer Vladimir Kara-Murza in 2015 and 2017, also in Russia.

Bellingcat reported that Zhalo Sr is also the deputy director of the FSB’s Second Service, linked to the assassination of Georgian asylum seeker and former Chechen rebel commander Zelimkhan Khangoshvili in 2019.

Since the news broke, the Russian embassy has confirmed Zhalo’s death, calling it a “tragic accident” and adding that “speculations which have appeared in a number of Western media’ over the diplomat’s death are ‘absolutely incorrect.'”

“All 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 embassy said in a statement.

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