Anna Chapman, the glamorous spy deported with nine other Russian sleeper agents from the United States this summer, is to become a leader in the youth wing of Vladimir Putin's United Russia party, according to reports this week in Moscow.
Ms Chapman, who ran a real estate business in New York as cover for her real role in Russia's foreign intelligence service, is to be unveiled at the annual conference of the Young Guard today, according to reports in the Russian media. Sources in the movement told journalists that Ms Chapman was definitely joining the group, but that no decision had yet been taken on what role she would play. One paper said that she would head a new group devoted to "patriotic education".
Since her deportation from the United States, Ms Chapman has been the only one of the 10 spies to maintain a high public profile. Although she has not given any in-depth interviews about her life as a spy, she has posed for suggestive photoshoots for men's magazines. There are rumours that she has found work as an adviser in a Russian bank.
* Foreign Secretary William Hague yesterday announced that Britain expelled a Russian diplomat for spying earlier this month. He said that the move was followed by a tit-for-tat expulsion of a British diplomat in Moscow.