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Who is Vladimir Putin’s rumoured girlfriend Alina Kabaeva

Russia-Ukraine war: The former star gymnast could be hit with sanctions because of her association with Vladimir Putin

May 07, 2022 / 04:54 PM IST
Russia-Ukraine war: Vladimir Putin's inner circle is under global scrutiny.

Russia-Ukraine war: Vladimir Putin's inner circle is under global scrutiny.

Former Russian gymnast Alina Kabaeva, rumoured to be President Vladimir Putin’s girlfriend, could be targeted with sanctions. The European Union has included her name in the sixth tranche of measures against Russia in its response to its war on Ukraine, news agency AFP has reported.

Kabaeva occupies the top position at National Media Group, which has stakes in almost all key government-controlled media houses. She is being considered for sanctions for promoting Russian propaganda as well as her association with Putin.

Recently, she had urged Russians to support their country’s war on Ukraine, CNN reported.

The European Union has not yet approved the draft proposing sanctions on Kabaeva. Member states can still decide to take off any names from the list or add to it.

If the sanctions against Kabaeva are approved, her assets will be frozen and she will be banned from entering the EU.

Kabaeva is an Olympic medal-winning gymnast. She reportedly met Vladimir Putin as a young gymnast. Reports say her association with Putin helped her and her family amass wealth.

However, the Russian president has denied a romantic relationship with her.

Russia was hit by a wave of sanctions after it invaded Ukraine in February. Many businesses exited Russia as retribution for its aggression.

Measures have been adopted against Putin’s inner circle of politicians and oligarchs. In April, the United States had sanctioned Putin’s daughters too.  Officials believed that Putin’s assets were hidden with his family members.

Little is publicly known about Putin’s daughters, who the US identified as Katerina Tikhonova and Maria Vorontsova.

(With inputs from AFP)
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first published: May 7, 2022 04:46 pm