Putin crisis: Desperate Russian president's regime 'crumbling' as 20 diplomats DEFECT from Moscow

Putin: The Russian president has set up
Putin: The Russian president has set up "Stalinist" restrictions to stop diplomats and spies defecting

Russian president Vladimir Putin puts 'cruel' restrictions in place to stop Russian diplomats defecting

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Vladimir Putin’s regime is reportedly "crumbling’" after more than 20 Russian diplomats and spies defected following the invasion of Ukraine.

The Russian president has put “Stalinist” restrictions on foreign postings following the unprecedented swapping of sides.

In his latest round of “cruel safeguards”, Putin has warned that the family members of Moscow’s officials on foreign missions could be jailed or worse if an official swaps sides while loved ones are effectively kept hostage at home.

If family members return to Russia while a diplomat or spy is on an overseas job, they will be kept at home as collateral, according to a report by The Mirror.

More than 20 Russian diplomats and spies have defected
More than 20 Russian diplomats and spies have defected

It is understood that Putin personally intervened to put measures in place to avoid further defections.

The defections are thought to be an indication that the Kremlin regime is at risk of collapsing.

Bruce Jones, one of the UK’s top Russia analysts told The Mirror: “I have been told by very senior and well-informed sources that there have been a number of defections of both Russian diplomats and intelligence officers.

“Some of them are known about publicly but in the background there are many more, possibly more than 20 and this is indicative of an extremely hazardous time for the Kremlin.

“It is likely this is being kept quiet for obvious reasons but these defections are not just to the west but across Asia as well.”

Almost one million Russian citizens have now fled the country while there is around 110,000 troop losses in Ukraine's frontline.

On New Year’s Day, one Ukrainian strike killed as many as 500 troops after their location was given away by using their mobile phones.

One plan against more defections would be to hold show trials for friends and families as a warning to traitors, according to The Mirror.

Around 110,000 troops have been killed in the Ukraine frontline
Around 110,000 troops have been killed in the Ukraine frontline

Colonel Richard Kemp, who has worked in the top UK government intelligence organisation the Joint Intelligence Committee said:

“Western intelligence will receive potentially very useful information on what is happening within Russia.

“This development could be extremely valuable. With the disaster that Putin has brought on Russia there will be many people in influential positions who are desperate to escape.

“There will be among them diplomats and intelligence people who are looking for an alternative.”