MOSCOW – Russia on Saturday denied that it provided information on U.S. troops movements and plans to Baghdad during the 2003 invasion of Iraq, the Interfax news agency reported.
"Similar, baseless accusations concerning Russia's intelligence have been made more than once," Interfax quoted Foreign Intelligence Service spokesman Boris Labusov as saying. "We don't consider it necessary to comment on such fabrications."
An unclassified Pentagon report released Friday cited two confiscated Iraqi documents as saying the Russians collected information from sources "inside the American Central Command" and that battlefield intelligence was provided to then-Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein through the Russian ambassador in Baghdad.
The report also said the Russian government had sources inside the American military command as it planned and executed the invasion of Iraq in 2003.
Pavel Felgenhauer, a respected independent Moscow-based military analyst, said the report was within the realm of possibility.
"It's quite plausible," he told The Associated Press.
He said a unit affiliated with the Defense Ministry's Main Intelligence Department, known by its abbreviation GRU, was actively working in Iraq at the time of the U.S. invasion of Iraq. The unit apparently was shut down after the fall of Baghdad.