Mediterranean Sea 23/07/10 AP
The Mediterranean Sea continues to be polluted by human activity in the countries surrounding it. Photo by AP
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The former deputy chief of a Russian military intelligence service was found dead on the shore of the Mediterranean by Turkish villagers in the province of Hatay, the Turkish newspaper Vatan reported Wednesday, citing Russian sources.

Experts had identified the body as that of Yuri Ivanov, the former deputy head of the Russian military intelligence service GRU, the report said. The general had last been deployed to review Russian military installations in Syria.

Moscow had confirmed the death of the general last week but only released further details this week, the report said.

Ivanov's body had been swept ashore on August 16 but was not identified immediately.

The Turkish foreign ministry had therefore approached neighbouring countries for further information, and Damascus reported that Ivanov had gone missing in Syria.

The general was last seen visiting the building site for a new Russian military base in the Syrian coastal city Tartus. After his visit he had left for a meeting with Syrian intelligence agents, but went missing.

Ivanov was believed to have masterminded a series of assassination attacks which the Russian secret service carried out against Chechen leaders living abroad, the report said.