Melnishenko is considered a close ally of Vladimir Putin, and his fortunes were frozen and imposed on him. European union Sanctions in an attempt to force the Russian president to suspend military action in Ukraine.
Also a Russian millionaire troubled by the war, he was born in Belarus to a Russian father and a Ukrainian mother, one of the Russian millionaires affected by the war. Italy A boat worth 5 530 million ($ 578 million) owned by him was frozen on the EU list last week and its assets frozen.
Andrei Melnichenko described the war in Ukraine as “a tragedy that must be prevented, otherwise there will be a global food crisis because the price of fertilizers is already too high for many farmers”.
Melnisenko, 50, told Reuters in an e-mail that the situation in Ukraine was “really sad … we urgently need peace.”
He added, “As a Russian born in Belarus and involved in bloodshed in Ukraine, I feel great pain and despair when I see fraternal people fighting and dying.”
Melnichchenko, nicknamed the “King of Coal and Fertilizers”, was one of the calls for a ceasefire on February 24 by wealthy Russian merchants to bring peace.
Since Russia began its military operation UkraineAccording to “Bloomberg”, Russia’s billionaire began to chase after billionaires, including Melnishenko, Russia’s seventh richest man.
According to Forbes estimates, Melnishenko’s total assets are currently worth $ 11.1 billion.
Andrei Melnichenko, a billionaire who married Serbian model Alexandra in 2005 and lives in the Russian capital Moscow, now owns a majority stake in fertilizer company Eurochem and Soik Coal Energy.
And started MelnishenkoHe traded in coins with two friends when he was a physics student at Moscow State University after the fall of the Soviet Union, after which he began creating “currency kiosks” and later went on to buy property in coal and fertilizer while acquiring factories and mines. Was close to bankruptcy.
Russian billionaire companies employing more than 100,000 people have invested about $ 23 billion in fertilizer and coal production over the past 15 years.
Pressure on Putin
Analysts believe the West is targeting those close to the Russian president and so-called “friends of Putin” with the intention of pressuring him to end military action.
But James Scheer, a researcher at the Estonian Institute for Foreign Policy, did not expect the ban to change his mind. Putin“The president and those around him, at least political and security officials, have never been subject to the logic of sanctions,” he said.
According to political analyst Nabil Rushwan, he believes that Western sanctions against those close to Putin are intended to put pressure on those people and threaten their interests, and then put pressure on Putin.
He told Sky News Arabia: “They are very lucky, and if the West estimates that their interests are harmed, they will affect the Russian decision, but this is unlikely to happen because everyone knows the government system. Russia“.
Rushvan concludes: “Although sanctions have put severe pressure on Russia, some civilians are facing life difficulties and they will not discourage Putin from ending military operations in Ukraine.”
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