Ukraine embassy in Madrid becomes latest to receive blood-soaked letter

Ukrainian Foreign Ministry confirms a recent wave of ‘intimidating’ mail containing blood and animal eyes at its diplomatic missions in several European countries

Police outside the Ukrainian embassy in Madrid.
Police outside the Ukrainian embassy in Madrid.Carlos Luján (Europa Press)

Spanish police on Friday morning cordoned off the Ukrainian embassy in Madrid after workers there noticed a suspicious letter with traces of blood on the outside of the envelope, law enforcement sources have confirmed.

The incident appears to be one of many taking place across Europe in recent days. Ukrainian Foreign Ministry spokesman Oleg Nikolenko on Friday said that some of its embassies and consulates in Europe have been receiving threatening letters and “bloody packages” containing “animal eyes.”

Ukrainian embassies in Hungary, the Netherlands, Poland, Croatia, Italy and Austria, as well as consulates in Naples, Krakow and Brno (Czech Republic) have received similar blood-soaked mail.

“We are studying the meaning of this message,” Nikolenko wrote in a statement on Facebook. Ukraine’s Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba has described it as a “planned campaign of intimidation.”

“The fact that the postage is not Spanish, along with other characteristics, could link it to items that have been intercepted at other Ukrainian embassies and consular offices in different European countries,” said sources at the Spanish Interior Ministry.

This is the second alert in 48 hours at the Ukrainian embassy in the Spanish capital: on Wednesday, another letter arrived containing pyrotechnic material that went off when a worker opened it, causing minor injuries to one of the individual’s hands.

With additional reporting by Mariel Delgado and Eliona Rakipaj

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