Ex-KGB General Lev Sotskov was found dead at his Moscow apartment on Wednesday with a gunshot wound to his head. As per Russian media reports the retired major-general was suffering from a number of medical conditions.
The body of the 90-year-old retired intelligence officer was discovered by his wife on Wednesday afternoon inside the bathroom of their apartment in southwestern Moscow, with a note. Upon examining the scene, the police officials told reporters that the cause of death was suicide as per 'initial information.'
Mentioning the note, they explained that Sotskov wrote he had used a semi-automatic Tokarev TT-30 pistol received as a gift from his Mongolian colleagues.
"The pistol is a relic of the battles on the Khalkhin-Gol River. I received it when I was an envoy to the Mongolian secret service, on the occasion of the 500th anniversary of Ulan-Bator, in 1989. - L. Sotskov," the note read.
Recruited in the KGB in 1959, Sotskov served in the foreign and central intelligence of the Soviet Union and then Russia for more than 40 years. The head of the press office of External Intelligence Service of Russia (SVR), Sergey Ivanov, described the veteran's passing as a "personal tragedy" for the service.
As per Sotskov relatives, while suffering from a few medical conditions the former intelligence officer had often said that he was "tired of living," Russia Today reported.
Sotskov was widely known and respected for authoring several books about the intelligence service's work, after his retirement. One of his most famous books Operation Tarantula, on the Soviet intelligence identifying and attacking British politicians and spies between 1930 and 1945, was also awarded a special SVR prize in 2006.
The cause and details of the retired major-general's suicide have not been released yet. The investigation is currently underway with forensic specialists working closely with the police officials.