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Russia honors spies booted from U.S.

Oct. 18, 2010 at 3:20 PM   |   Comments

MOSCOW, Oct. 18 (UPI) -- Russian President Dmitry Medvedev honored the spies who were expelled from the United States this summer, his office announced Monday.

"A ceremony took place in the Kremlin to hand top state honors to a number of Foreign Intelligence Service employees, including the agents who were working in the United States and came back to Russia in July," said Medvedev's press secretary, Natalya Timakova, Interfax and TV Novosti reported.

U.S. authorities arrested 10 accused Russian spies June 27. Many of them had been working undercover for years and had homes and families in the United States. They were exchanged in Vienna July 9 for four detainees convicted of espionage in Russia.

The best-known of the agents, glamorous Anna Chapman, appeared earlier this month at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan to watch the launch of Russia's Soyuz spacecraft and bid farewell to a U.S. astronaut and two Russian cosmonauts who were leaving for the International Space Station.

Last week, Russian FondServiceBank said Chapman has been working as its president's adviser on innovations and investment. The bank serves Russian high-tech industries, aircraft and aerospace equipment makers.

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