georgi markov:

the umbrella assassination

Georgi Markov, mid-1960s (A photo belonging to Luben Markov, his cousin)

Georgi Markov, mid-1960s (A photo belonging to Luben Markov, his cousin)

Georgi Markov, the noted Bulgarian writer and dissident, died in 1978.

Like a storyline from a Bond movie, he was supposedly assassinated on the streets of London by a secret agent wielding a weapon disguised as an everyday umbrella.

But the truth is, as we discover in our three-part investigation, very different from the legend.


recommended reading

For a fascinating and revealing account of the case by the medical and scientific personnel involved, check out this report of a 1980 meeting of the Medico-Legal Society in London:

For Vladimir Kostov’s account, see his book, Bulgarian Umbrella: Soviet Direction and Operation of the Bulgarian Secret Service in Europe

We found this book to be useful, especially the chapter dealing with Markov’s relationship with Radio Free Europe: Cold War Radio: The Dangerous History of American Broadcasting in Europe, 1950-1989

And this BBC discussion with several people involved was useful and interesting, with some revealing comments: https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0bgblcd