Russian oligarch Roman Abramovich’s private jet landed at Ben-Gurion Airport, having taken off earlier in the day from Moscow, according to data published on sites that track world aviation. It is not known if the billionaire himself was on board.
Even though Abramovich has Israeli citizenship, his presence in Israel at this time could put the Israeli government at odds with the US and the EU. Abramovich, who also has Portuguese and Russian nationality, faces international sanctions, due to his close ties to the Kremlin and the enormous wealth created by companies formerly owned by the Russian government.
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Abramovich has real estate assets and investments in Israel and is a major donor to Israeli health, education and other institutions, including Yad Vashem, which has reportedly suspended collaborations with him.
Due to the sanctions imposed on him, Abramovich cannot enter the UK, where he has spent much of his time over the past 20 years. In Portugal, an investigation was opened against the rabbi of the Jewish community of Porto for his involvement in the process that led to the granting of Portuguese citizenship to Abramovich, due to his supposed Portuguese Jewish heritage.
Abramovich’s private jet was until a few days ago in Turkey, from where it flew to Moscow on Friday, and has now landed in Israel. Abramovich’s private jet is a Luxembourg-registered Gulfstream under the call name LX-RAY.
In its sanctions against Abramovich, the UK government said it had had a close relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin for decades. The British government has stated that Evraz, the company owned by Abramovich, has provided huge revenues to the Russian government, which are used for the war against Ukraine.
Abramovich had estimated his wealth at more than $15 billion before sanctions were imposed on him. He had tried to sell Chelsea FC, the English Premier League club he owns and placed in trust, before the sanctions were imposed on him.
Published by Globes, Israel business news – en.globes.co.il – on March 13, 2022.
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