Yuri is introduced early in the Modern Warfare 3 campaign, during the opening mission, "Persona Non Grata". He is brought in to aid Captain Price and Nikolai to get Soap out of India at the request of Price. Yuri is initially introduced as an ex-Spetsnaz soldier, holding an even more extreme dislike of Vladimir Makarov than Price himself. During the main storyline of Modern Warfare 3 it is revealed that Yuri was a former Ultranationalist, acting as one of Makarov's closest allies.
In a voiced-over sequence during Act Three, Yuri narrates to Captain Price his connections to Makarov, as well as new information about the plot of the previous two games being shown. Yuri reveals that he was at Makarov's side as he detonated the nuke in Modern Warfare and was shot by Makarov right before the massacre at Zakhaev International Airport in Modern Warfare 2.
Yuri also tells Price that he was with both Makarov and Imran Zakhaev in Priypat when Price made an attempt to kill Zakhaev, in 1996. This mission is playable during the Call of Duty 4 campaign, under the name of "One Shot, One Kill". Yuri's distrust of Makarov began after he detonated a nuclear device in the Middle East, wiping out 50,000 United States Marines.
Yuri intended to prevent the massacre at Zakhaev International Airport by killing Makarov and his men, as well as CIA agent "Alexei Bodorin". Instead, he found himself taken captive in the underground car park at the airport, before being shot by Makarov personally. Due to blood loss, Yuri was unable to catch up to the killers and passed out in the airport terminal.
During the final mission of Act Three, "Dust to Dust", Yuri sacrifices himself to save Price from death at Makarov's hands. He is killed in his actions, though buys Price enough time to act and kill Makarov, hanging him on the rooftop of the hotel complex they were fighting in. Yuri is not seen or spoken of during the previous two games in the franchise.