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Friday, July 09, 2010

U.S., Russia Exchange Spies In Vienna : NPR

U.S., Russia Exchange Spies In Vienna : NPR

U.S. and Russian flights involved in a 14-person spy swap landed briefly in Vienna, apparently exchanged agents, then took off again in the largest such diplomatic dance since the Cold War.

The planes landed within minutes of each other Friday, parked nose-to-tail at a remote section of the tarmac, then spent about an hour and a half there before departing just as quickly.

The Russian government plane left Vienna reportedly carrying 10 agents deported from the U.S. and was assumed to be heading for Moscow.

Minutes later, the U.S. plane that brought the 10 spies in from New York took off, apparently with four Russians who had confessed to spying for the West. It was not immediately known if that plane was heading straight back to the United States or stopping over in London.

Igor Sutyagin, an arms control researcher convicted of spying for the United States, had told relatives of the spy swap and said he was being sent to Vienna and then onto London.

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