EU Court Upholds Sanctions Against Alisher Usmanov and Igor Shuvalov Amid Ukraine Conflict

Russian oligarach Alisher Usmanov
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The sanctions against Russian Putin friends will not be lifted anytime soon. In a ruling on February 7, the European Union’s judiciary maintained sanctions against the Russian-Uzbek oligarch Alisher Usmanov, rejecting his appeal to be struck from the EU’s sanctions list. These sanctions were initially imposed on Usmanov, alongside other prominent Russian oligarchs and officials, in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in February 2022.

Alisher Usmanov, who has been characterized as a pro-Kremlin oligarch with notably close connections to Russian President Vladimir Putin, found himself targeted by EU measures due to his significant influence and financial activities. The 2022 sanctions decision highlighted Usmanov’s deep-seated relationship with the Kremlin, labeling him as one of Putin’s favored oligarchs. The sanctions narrative pointed out Usmanov’s extensive business ventures across various sectors, revealing how top Russian officials have enjoyed the use of luxurious properties under his control.

Central to the EU’s decision was the conclusion that Usmanov had actively provided material or financial support to Russian decision-makers implicated in the illegal annexation of Crimea and the destabilization of Ukraine. This stance underscores the EU’s commitment to holding individuals accountable for contributing to or facilitating actions that threaten Ukraine’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

Additionally, the EU court also dismissed a similar appeal by former Russian Deputy Prime Minister Igor Shuvalov, who sought removal from the sanctions list. Serving as deputy prime minister from 2012 to 2018, Shuvalov has been described as a pivotal member of Putin’s inner circle by the U.K. in 2022. Highlighting his wealth, the U.K. revealed Shuvalov’s ownership of two luxury apartments in London, collectively valued at around $14 million, further emphasizing the international scrutiny faced by individuals closely associated with the Russian government.

These rulings by the EU court not only reinforce the sanctions imposed in response to the ongoing conflict in Ukraine but also signal the European Union’s rigorous stance on individuals deemed to support or enact policies contributing to regional destabilization and aggression.

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