Russia has arrested a 33-year-old belly dancer named Yekaterina 'Katya' Zavalishina, in connection with an espionage case. She has been suspected of high treason and spying as the war between Russia and Ukraine rages on.

Zavalishina was arrested shortly before she was about to fly to Switzerland for work from Moscow. She has been charged with passing state secrets to a representative of a foreign country. However, it is not yet clear which country she allegedly shared the secrets with.

She has been held as a suspected spy in the Russian capital Moscow by the FSB, Russia 's counterintelligence service. "The FSB detained Moscow resident, Russian citizen E.S. Zavalishina. She is suspected of high treason. The investigative team demands her arrest," an official source told Russian news agency TASS.

The woman was registered as an individual entrepreneur in "business and management consulting," but had stopped her work in April this year. Several reports have claimed that Zavalishina is believed to have well-established connections and had a history of travelling to Europe, the US and Africa.

Moscow's Lefortovo court has given a restraining (custody) order against Zavalishina until August 13. "She is suspected under Article 275 of Russia's Criminal Code ('High Treason'). Her case has not yet been examined," the court said, without giving other details about the probe.

The Russian university graduate faces 20 years in prison if convicted, according to a report in The Mirror.

Meanwhile, the war between Russia and Ukraine has been seeing hundreds of casualties a day as the battle continues in the east. The Ukrainian forces are holed up in a factory in the city of Severodonetsk with hundreds of civilians.

Russian and Ukrainian troops are currently battling for control over Severodonetsk, as seizing the city will allow Russia to move closer to its goal of taking over Luhansk and the Donetsk regions of eastern Ukraine.

Belly dance
Representative Image by Lea Milanović from Pixabay