The former GRU officer (Russian military intelligence) Sergei Skripal worked for British intelligence under the pseudonym Forthwith. For over a decade, he provided MI6 with important information, including all working phone numbers of the GRU staff of the General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces.
The British press, referring to unnamed sources in the intelligence, writes that over the years of work at MI6, while Skripal did not disclose names of Russian intelligence agents working under cover in Western countries, he provided information on the structure of Russian military intelligence. It is noted that this information was transferred to the British counterintelligence MI5, as well as to the CIA.
According to British reporters, attention was first drawn to Skripal by Spanish intelligence. Around July 1995, when Skripal was in Spain as an employee of the GRU, he was contacted by an employee of MI6.
Subsequently, Skripal traveled to Spain to “restore his health” (stay in resorts), his contacts with MI6 expanded, and soon he became their full-time employee. After being fired from the GRU in 2000, British intelligence provided him with a holiday home next to the Spanish Málaga.
According to British sources, in his work for the British intelligence service, Skripal was also guided by personal considerations – “he became very interested in Britain.” Ie. he entirely changed allegiances.
In Russia, Skripal was supposed to serve 13 years in prison for treason – but was formerly pardoned by the Russian president, in exchange for 10 others.
He remains in critical condition in Britain, due to a suspected recent poisoning.