London, Dec 13 (ANI): A top KGB defector has claimed that the blonde Commons researcher, who is facing deportation from Britain after being accused of espionage, is Russia's most effective spy in 30 years.
Oleg Gordievsky, 72, who was a double agent for MI6 in the Seventies and Eighties, said Russian-born Ekaterina Zatuliveter, 25, "caused more damage than all other KGB agents put together".
"She was the strongest and most useful KGB agent for the last 30 years," the Daily Mail quoted him as saying.
Gordievsky claimed that Zatuliveter, known as Katia, had gathered information about British naval bases around the world, while working as an aide to controversial Liberal Democrat MP Mike Hancock.
"She asked important military questions, passed them to the MP, who then pushed them up the chain. Once answers arrived, she read them, re-wrote them, copied, and passed the copies to KGB agents," he stated.
The KGB's former London station chief said Zatuliveter was working undercover for Russian foreign intelligence, the SVR, and that she was recruited as an agent at St Petersburg University, where President Vladimir Putin studied.
"She prepared herself for that kind of job from the very beginning," he said.
Gordievsky warned that Zatuliveter represented a new style of threat to the West from young Russians recruited to help their secret services out of a sense of patriotism, and who now enjoy freedom to travel abroad.
"Zatuliveter's case is a typical example of how the active, clever, well-educated agent gathers information. She is a huge loss to Russian intelligence," he added. (ANI)