Alexander Bortnikov

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Alexander Bortnikov
Alexander Bortnikov 2014-12-26.jpg
Director of the Federal Security Service
Assumed office
12 May 2008
Preceded byNikolai Patrushev
Personal details
Alexander Vasilyevich Bortnikov

(1951-11-15) 15 November 1951 (age 67)
Perm, Soviet Union
EducationFSB Academy
Alma materPetersburg State Transport University
Military service
Allegiance Soviet Union
Branch/serviceFederal Security Service
Years of service1975–present
RankGeneral of the Army

Alexander Vasilyevich Bortnikov (Russian: Алекса́ндр Васи́льевич Бо́ртников; born 15 November 1951) is a Russian official. He has been Director of the FSB since May 12, 2008.


Bortnikov was born in Perm, Soviet Union. He graduated from the Leningrad Institute of Railway Engineers in 1973.[1]

From 1975 to 2004 he worked in the KGB and its successors in Leningrad/Saint Petersburg. From June 2003 to March 2004 he was the Chief of the St. Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast Federal Security Service (FSB) Directorate.

From February 24, 2004, to May 12, 2008, he was Head of the Economic Security Service of FSB and a Deputy Director of FSB.


FSB head Alexander Bortnikov (right) meets with Russian President Dmitri Medvedev in March 2009, to discuss ending the counter-terrorism operation in Chechnya.

In February 2007 Russian magazine The New Times wrote about the plan to murder Alexander Litvinenko with reference to "a source in the FSB": "People from the top management of the agency had taken part in the elaboration of the plan, maintains an FSB source. And, allegedly, FSB Director Patrushev knew about it. According to the same source, Head of the FSB Economic Security Department general-lieutenant Alexander Bortnikov had allegedly been appointed overseer of the operation."[2] In May 2007 he was reported to have been implicated in a money-laundering case investigated by the RF Interior Ministry in connection with the murder of the Central Bank Deputy Head Andrey Kozlov.[3][4]

On May 12, 2008, he was appointed Director of the FSB by President Dmitry Medvedev and is believed by some security analysts to be Medvedev's man.[5]

He is also a member of the board of directors of Sovkomflot.

In December 2017 in an open letter published by Kommersant more than 30 Russian academics slammed Bortnikov for seeking to legitimize the Stalinist Great Purge because in an interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta published to mark 100 years since the establishment of the Cheka Bortnikov said the archives show that “a significant part” of the criminal cases of that period “had an objective side to them.”[6]

Honours and awards[edit]


  1. ^ "Biographies of the political leaders of the Medvedev Administration" (PDF). Barcelona Centre for International Affairs. 2010.
  2. ^ Кто и зачем убил Литвиненко. (Who and wherefore killed Litvinenko) Archived 2008-05-29 at the Wayback Machine The New Times №1 February 5, 2007.
  3. ^ Австрийская полиция может возбудить дело против ключевых чиновников Кремля, утверждает New Times May 23, 2007.
  4. ^ Officials are taking money away to the West Archived 2008-05-17 at the Wayback Machine by Natalia Morar, The New Times № 15, May 21, 2007 English translation Archived 2008-03-17 at the Wayback Machine
  5. ^ FSB Shuffle Seen Helping Medvedev Archived 2008-05-17 at the Wayback Machine The Moscow Times May 13, 2008.
  6. ^ Russian academics slam FSB security chief for comments on Stalin’s purgesThe Japan Times December 24, 2017.

External links[edit]

Government offices
Preceded by
Sergei Smirnov
Chief of the St. Petersburg and Leningrad Oblast FSB Directorate
June 2003 – March 2004
Succeeded by
Yury Ignashchenkov
Preceded by
Yury Zaostrovtsev
Head of the Economic Security Service of FSB
February 24, 2004 – May 12, 2008
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Nikolay Patrushev
Director of the FSB
May 12, 2008–present