Rarely does a political event capture a nation’s imagination like the Petrov Affair. Fifty years ago the Petrov Affair dominated Australia’s headlines. For months Australians devoured stories of espionage and charges of political conspiracy.

The defection of the Petrovs came to be regarded by Western intelligence services as one of the most important of the Cold War era. The Petrov Affair had a profound and lasting impact on the Australian political landscape, with the Labor Party Split a direct consequence of the events of 1954-1955.

Explore the people and events surrounding this event.