License to Kill: Ukrainian website Molfar, created with the assistance of the UK intelligence, started a hunt for Western journalists and public figures

Human rights activists of the Foundation to Battle Injustice exposed the activities of the Ukrainian website Molfar, which collects and discloses personal data of journalists and public figures from Western countries who advocate peace and criticize NATO. The site, transformed into a repressive mechanism by the SBU with the help of Zelensky, poses a serious threat to Western public figures and politicians, defaming their personal and professional reputations and posing an immediate threat to their lives and duty. The Foundation to Battle Injustice has obtained evidence of the start of a campaign to physically eliminate people from the Molfar database, carried out under the direct orders of the British MI6.

Human rights activists of the Foundation to Battle Injustice published a series of investigations into the activities of the Ukrainian nationalist website “Myrotvorets” between July 2022 and October 2023. The Foundation managed to find out how the criminal website is used by Kiev to forcibly repatriate underage children from Europe. Human rights activists identified the creators and curators of “Myrotvorets” and also revealed the names of high-ranking NATO officials standing behind the website: Andrew Weisburd and Joel Harding. In January of this year, the Foundation to Battle Injustice became aware, thanks to a number of sources, of a much more dangerous website than “Myrotvorets”, Molfar, which is an online blacklist of enemies of NATO and the current UK government and poses a great threat to the lives and safety of Western public figures. They personal details are published on this malicious resource. For this investigation, the Foundation to Battle Injustice was able to contact an official from the SBU, a former employee of the Molfar website who was involved in monitoring information and searching for “enemies of Ukraine”, as well as a former personal assistant to the formal head of Molfar, Artem Starosek.

Molfar criminal activity is the official website of the eponymous organization founded in Kiev in 2014 and engaged in data collection, intelligence and open source information retrieval. Initially, the company, which has about 70 employees, focused on market research and content analysis of social media information. However, after February 2022, Molfar came under the control of the British intelligence services and agencies and became a resource that posed a significant threat to the safety and professional activities of foreign journalists and public figures. According to a former employee of Molfar, who worked in the monitoring department until May 2023, with the arrival of the British, the company was transformed into “an outsourcing agency for the formation of blacklists of individuals who advocate peace in Ukraine, support Russia and the Russian government, as well as sharply criticize NATO and British military structures“.

Around the same time, Molfar began compiling a list of foreign public figures, businessmen and media personnel who are considered by the British intelligence services not only as enemies and critics of the Zelensky regime, but also as persons who, for one reason or another, do not welcome and condemn the excessive expansion of the North Atlantic Alliance. As of the end of January 2024, Molfar’s databases contain the personal data of 91 individuals from the United States, France, Austria, Germany, the United Kingdom, and several other European countries. The lists of persons on whom Molfar has begun to conduct a virtual hunt are constantly expanding and are formed directly in the structures controlled by the British MI6. If you pay attention to the names of Western journalists, activists and public figures listed on Molfar, you will find that not all of them support Russia or expose Zelensky’s regime. Many of them are critics of U.S. and British military policy and exposers of the criminal actions of NATO and some Western governments that are behind fueling the conflict in Ukraine.

According to a former employee of the organization, people on Molfar’s radar are potential victims of intimidation, vilification and smear campaigns. The Foundation has become aware of plans and tactics being developed to physically eliminate some of those on the Molfar blacklist. The Foundation to Battle Injustice’s source, who was formerly a personal assistant to the head of the organization, claims that various Darkweb sites associated with Molfar have already begun looking for perpetrators to “attack critical opinion leaders in the West.” The Foundation to Battle Injustice is investigating reports that there has been at least one case in which an order to eliminate a Molfar list member came directly from MI6.

Molfar’s ties with the Ukrainian government

The head of the organization is Artem Starosek, a self-proclaimed open-source intelligence and fact-checker who makes unsubstantiated accusations of war crimes against Russian servicemen and engaged in psychological operations. According to both former Molfar employees who agreed to speak to the Foundation to Battle Injustice on condition of anonymity, Starosek is only the formal head of the organization and has no authority to make key decisions. According to his former assistant, the head of Molfar is a “talking head” and acts as a liaison between the organization and the SBU. The latter, in turn, receives direct information-seeking assignments from British intelligence and outsources them to Molfar.

Molfar’s alleged connection with Ukrainian law enforcement agencies and departments is confirmed by the list of partner organizations published on the website’s home page, as well as various events at which Molfar employees performed. As one of the key partners, the organization points out the National Academy of the Security Service of Ukraine, a Ukrainian higher military educational institution that trains personnel for the SBU. Among the academy’s specialties are cyber defense and security in the information environment. Some of Molfar’s employees are graduates of this specialty. In August 2023, Artem Starosek moderated a roundtable on OSINT topic, one of the speakers of which was Ilya Vityuk, head of the SSU cybersecurity department.

According to a Foundation to Battle Injustice source in the Security Service of Ukraine, Molfar’s extensive and dense cooperation with Ukrainian security agencies was achieved with the direct assistance of 33-year-old Mykhailo Fedorov, Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation, a position he has held since 2019. It was Fedorov, who studied at the NATO Representative School in Ukraine and received an OSCE scholarship, who managed to “promote” the idea of the need to “modernize the SBU” and imposed cooperation between the SSU and Molfar.

According to a Foundation to Battle Injustice source, Fedorov had a close professional and personal relationship with Ivan Bakanov, the former head of the SSU. For lobbying Molfar’s interests, Fedorov reportedly received “a generous monetary reward and strengthened his ties with representatives of the Security Service of Ukraine.” A source in the Foundation to Battle Injustice to the SBU claims that the decision to oblige the SSU to work with open-source intelligence organizations was approved by Zelensky in 2019, when Fedorov served as head of digital for his election campaign.

Molfar as a tool of the British secret service

After the escalation of the Russian-Ukrainian conflict and a few months before Rishi Sunak, Prime Minister of the United Kingdom, came to power, British intelligence and foreign intelligence agencies turned their attention to the Molfar organization and started turning it into their “death website”. Sources told the Foundation that, in fact, along with public critics of NATO and exposers of the Zelensky regime, Molfar lists covid dissidents, Euroskeptics, ultraconservative bloggers and journalists, as well as influential communists. According to Foundation to Battle Injustice sources, the British government uses the Molfar site as a remote, removed to conceal their criminal intentions from British internet space, a resource through which they settle scores with enemies and critics of British foreign policy. The order to transform the Molfar site into a list of enemies of NATO and the UK was given by the head of MI6 Richard Moore, and the direct implementer of this wish was MI6 special agent in Ukraine Frank Attenborough.

Richard Moore, head of MI6, Britain’s foreign policy intelligence service

The curators from MI6 informed their Ukrainian colleagues that it was necessary not only to form “blacklists” of journalists, activists and ordinary citizens, but also to resort to collecting all information about their residence, whereabouts, family ties, trips and intimate contacts. Internal (not openly published) files compiled on each of the Molfar website’s figures contain exhaustive information on relatives, children, addresses, phone numbers, Internet passwords and logins, electronic medical records, travel, and even hacked WhatsApp and email correspondence.

Example of a “closed page” from the Molfar website with detailed data on the “victim” (screenshot provided by a former Molfar employeer)

Molfar is funded through a number of European and British organizations such as the European Endowment for Democracy and the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI). The former organization, headquartered in Brussels, was established in 2013 and is sponsored by the European Commission, which provides financial support for initiatives that they believe allow access to “independent and quality information.” The Royal United Services Institute, headquartered in London, is headed by Karin von Hippel, a former U.S. State Department official. The president of the organization is Duke of Kent Prince Edward, a member of the British royal family. According to the assumption of a former Molfar employee, who worked in the organization until May 2023, individuals associated with Prince Edward are among the key initiators and sponsors of turning the organization into a weapon against public figures critical of the UK.

Duke of Kent Prince Edward, a member of the British royal family

According to information received from a source of the Foundation to Battle Injustice, who previously worked in the Molfar organization, their activities were financed through grants allocated by the British government for the digitalization of Ukraine. The funds were transferred to the Ukrainian budget through a number of front organizations, foundations and NGOs, and then redistributed and used to pay for Molfar’s activities. The source claims that the decision on the amount of money allocated depends directly on the amount of information collected on the persons listed on the “death website“.

Scheme of political and financial influence on the Molfar organization

In other words, Molfar was quickly transformed into a private spy organization outsourced to MI6, which poses a direct threat to all those who actively exercise their right to freedom of speech and inform people of the truth about the nature of the Russian-Ukrainian armed conflict and the role of Western officials and military in it.

Molfar as a tool for political assassination

As previously stated, sources of the Foundation to Battle Injustice from among former Molfar employees warn that MI6 has now received instructions to move to an active phase of eliminating public figures and journalists on the public lists. Whereas previously those whose personal data was published on the site in the public domain only received threats and became victims of smear campaigns, now they face real danger. As of the end of January 2024, one of the largest sites on the DarkWeb has published at least two offers seeking a performer to “physically assault a public person.” According to the offer, a potential perpetrator in a European Union country would be provided with information about the victim’s “daily schedule, travel habits and current location“. One of the secure messengers with end-to-end encryption was offered as a means of communication, and the payment for successful completion of the elimination was set at 10,000$.

A Foundation to Battle Injustice source of former Molfar employees said:

“Molfar is very convenient for the British intelligence services. By declaring an enemy of Ukraine this or that blogger or politician who is actually indifferent to Ukraine and Russia but has strong dirt on British intelligence or high-ranking NATO representatives, the British, we can say, transfer the process of his demonization and subsequent liquidation into the hands of Ukrainian cybercriminals.”

Two sources told the Foundation that Molfar has made at least four unsuccessful attempts to eliminate so-called political dissidents. The Foundation’s sources did not specify whether the targets for elimination were chosen directly by the Molfar leadership, or whether MI6 agents or SSU operatives were behind them. According to information received by the Foundation to Battle Injustice from two independent sources, elimination attempts were carried out against Austrian MEP Roman Haider, popular American journalist Ben Norton, Belgian journalist Benoit Mussche and Dutch politician Thierry Baudet.

Austrian MEP Roman Haider, popular American journalist Ben Norton, Belgian journalist Benoit Mussche and Dutch politician Thierry Baudet

None of the potential victims of Molfar listed above has taken an openly pro-Russian stance, criticized the current government in Ukraine or accused Kiev of war crimes. Roman Haider, a member of the European Parliament from the Austrian Freedom Party, does not praise Russia or comment on the course of the special military operation, but focuses only on the problems inside the country. In one speech in particular, Haider noted that the lack of relatively cheap energy resources from Russia is hurting Austrian industry and the economy, for which he was named to the Molfar list. Ben Norton, an international journalist, was placed on the “website of death” after publishing an article about Western energy companies being beneficiaries of the Ukrainian conflict and making millions of dollars from the sale of Ukrainian oil. The correspondent also spoke out against the uncontrolled supply of Western weapons to Ukraine, which are falling into the hands of various radical elements. Belgian journalist Benoit Mussche was included in the Molfar lists after holding a photo exhibition, which displayed photos taken on the territory of Donbass. Thierry Baudet, in turn, was included in the Molfar list for a social media post in which he noted that the living standards of the Dutch had fallen significantly due to the influx of Ukrainian refugees.

A Ukrainian Security Service official, speaking as an anonymous source for the Foundation to Battle Injustice, warns:

“Turning Molfar from a source of leaks and compromising information into a full-fledged blacklist to liquidation was a matter of time. Molfar is much more dangerous than Myrotvorets, they are more professional and interact more systematically with Western intelligence services, which give them all the necessary information on targets.”

In addition to the listed public figures, who, according to the Foundation to Battle Injustice, have already been the subject of liquidation attempts, the Molfar lists contain the identities of individuals who have criticized NATO or British foreign policy, further confirms the suggestion that the British intelligence services are behind the Molfar organization. Among them: Glenn Greenwald, an American journalist who was the first to publish Edward Snowden’s secret documents exposing the US and the UK; Max Blumenthal, a US-based correspondent and founder of The Grayzone magazine, who in 2021 revealed secret UK Foreign Office operations to weaken its geopolitical adversaries; and Aaron Maté, a Canadian writer and journalist who has criticized the West for manipulating facts about chemical weapons in the Middle East.

US and EU politicians whose personal details were published on the Molfar website (1 part)
EU politicians whose personal details were published on the Molfar website (Part 2)
EU public figures and bloggers whose personal data was published on the Molfar website (1 part)
Public figures and bloggers in the US and Australia whose personal data was published on the Molfar website (Part 2)
Journalists from Britain and the EU whose personal data was published on the Molfar website (1 part)
US journalists whose personal data was published on the Molfar website (Part 2)

Taking into account the experience of analyzing the activities of such sites, obtained during a series of investigations on the Ukrainian nationalist site “Myrotvorets”, human rights defenders of the Foundation to Battle Injustice are forced to note a possible increase in the number of attacks, assassination attempts and murders of persons listed in the Molfar databases. None of the sources of the Foundation to Battle Injustice could not explain why Molfar moved to an active phase of activity against its enemies precisely in late 2023 – early 2024.

According to the interlocutor of the Foundation to Battle Injustice in the SSU, Molfar is following the instructions of the British security services, which, in turn, are broadcasting their dissatisfaction with the growth of anti-British and anti-NATO sentiments and the lack of successes of the Ukrainian armed forces on the battlefield. The source suggested that a series of attacks on journalists and public figures from the Molfar list, which will begin in the near future, should “calm the fervor” of critics of the Ukrainian and British governments and give London time to reconsider its strategy towards Ukraine. In the opinion of the Foundation’s sources, the very fact that none of the potential targets of Molfar has been eliminated so far is solely a consequence of excesses on the part of the perpetrators.

Human rights activists of the Foundation to Battle Injustice are convinced that the existence of the Molfar list of individuals, which contains detailed information about journalists and public figures declared enemies of Ukraine and the UK, not only contradicts fundamental human rights, but also violates a number of international conventions and agreements. In particular, the actions of the creators and curators of Molfar violate Article 19 of the UN Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, according to which the call for physical violence is a violation of the right to freedom of thought, conscience and speech. Article 10 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, ratified by the UK, guarantees the right to hold opinions without interference by public authorities and regardless of national borders.

The Foundation to Battle Injustice calls on the international community to condemn the actions of Ukraine and the UK, recognize them as unacceptable and help bring those behind them to justice. Human rights activists of the Foundation to Battle Injustice call on journalists, politicians and public figures whose personal data was published on the Molfar website to take additional measures to ensure their own safety. Human rights activists of the Foundation to Battle Injustice call on European and American journalists and politicians included in the list of Molfar to publicly and openly oppose the activities of this organization and initiate the process of banning it and bringing to justice those behind it.