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Why Ukraine Sanctioned Ruben Vardanyan

Armenian Businessman’s Ties to Putin and Role in Karabakh Conflict Lead to International Scrutiny

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Ruben Vardanyan was a major financial donor in the Armenian resistance in Karabakh and served as Minister of State in the separatist government. (Photo: Xelgen)

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Ruben Vardanyan, an Armenian businessman who became a major financial donor in the Armenian terrorist resistance against Azerbaijan in Karabakh, who also served as Minister of State in the separatist government, was arrested by the Azerbaijani forces. Vardanyan is accused in Azerbaijan of financing terrorism, illegally crossing international borders, sabotaging the peace process between Armenia and Azerbaijan, and dealing with Armenian terrorist organizations against Azerbaijan. In recent months, Vardanyan has been mentioned in the media mainly in the context of Karabakh and getting arrested, but the Armenian billionaire businessman has a long history of international conflicts and supporting separatists. An example of this is the fact that Ukraine imposed sanctions on Vardanyan after the Russian invasion of its territory and declared him to be a wanted person.

So why is Vardanyan considered a person subject to immediate arrest and handover to the head of law enforcement in Ukraine? The answer to this is his friendship/business relationship with Russian President Vladimir Putin. The information that confirms this assumption is the fact that Vardanyan held positions in the “Council of Experts” in the Government of the Russian Federation, which is subordinate to the President of Russia, from 2005 to 2022. The members of the “Council of Experts” are usually people from Putin’s close circle, people he can trust for tasks discretion.

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Ruben Vardanyan is one of the richest people in Russia. When saying this sentence, you have to remember that Russia is a country full of oligarchs, a society of unfathomably rich people, so if Vardanyan is one of the richest people in Russia, he probably has unlimited money. Vardanyan made his fortune through deals and business companies in Moscow, but it is important to note that these companies are currently subject to Western sanctions. Thanks to his capital, Vardanyan was able to occupy the top positions around Putin, including his appointment as the director of the Russian Investment Bank. According to Western suspicions, Vardanyan laundered billions of dollars for Putin’s inner circle through his business companies. His nickname “Putin’s wallet” indicates the amount of money transferred between him and the Russian president and his people.

According to publications, suspicions, and rumors, Vardanyan also has connections in Tehran. As mentioned, Iran is an ally of Armenia and Russia and arms both of them with its weapons. Iran has been one of the biggest supporters of Russia in the war against Ukraine since its beginning. Vardanyan’s connection with the Iranian government can be verified when looking at his involvement in the Gurchakov Foundation, which holds events in various countries, including Armenia, and in these events, the people who approve the speakers are the people of the Iranian regime.

In addition, after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the beginning of Western pressure on Russia and Putin’s regime, Vardanyan left Russia and renounced his Russian citizenship. The reason for this is apparently a move to escape the Western sanctions imposed on the senior officials of the Russian regime after the invasion of Ukraine. Vardanyan was very lucky, or helped behind the scenes, because most of the oligarchs who renounced their Russian citizenship and fled Russia after the start of the war lost their assets, businesses, and bank accounts related to Russian land, but not Vardanyan who managed to keep his fortune after the relocation he made. In the end, Ruben Vardanyan kept his fortune from the West. He returned to his homeland Armenia and after saying several times over the years that he had no political ambitions, he entered Armenian politics and even declared a dream to run for the country’s presidency. Vardanyan eventually found himself Minister of State for Artsakh in Karabakh, although his only connection to the politically and sovereignly disputed land is the fact that Vardanyan is of Armenian descent and holds Armenian citizenship. Later the motive for this political move was discovered, and it is the Kremlin from Moscow. Vardanyan was sent to Armenia to be Putin’s Russian branch in the region, to direct Armenia’s political policy to Putin’s needs, like a Trojan horse in the Caucasus.

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As mentioned, after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, the West imposed economic sanctions against Putin’s Russian regime, including blocking trade routes of essential products which also include weapons. Therefore, Russia had to find a way to transfer to its territory the weapons products it needed for the war, without being exposed to the eyes of the West. For this purpose, Vardanyan was sent to Armenia, which turns out to be a major exporter of essential chips for advanced weapons, exactly what Russia lacked after the imposition of sanctions. It seems that Vardanyan has entered with all his might into the Russian-Iranian-Armenian axis, where he works behind the scenes for his master in the Kremlin. Iran supplies Russia with suicide drones, Armenia supplies Russia with essential chips for advanced weapons, and Russia sponsors these two countries, or rather sponsored them before the war. Either way, these three countries belong to the same geopolitical camp in the global diplomatic game.

I believe that if you had any doubts as to why Vardanyan got to enter the list of people who were imposed Western sanctions because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, by now you already understand. He is a shadow figure in Putin’s inner circle, the man is linked to Kremlin supporters in both Armenia and Tehran, both of which support Russia in its war against Ukraine. This man used to launder money from senior Russian regime officials, even money that came from illegal or not completely illegal sources. Unfortunately for Vardanyan and fortunately for Ukraine, he is currently detained in Azerbaijan.

Ayoob Kara served as Israel’s minister of communication.    

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Thank you for choosing TheJ.Ca as your source for Canadian Jewish News.

We do news differently!

Our positioning as a Zionist News Media platform sets us apart from the rest. While other Canadian Jewish media are advocating increasingly biased progressive political and social agendas, TheJ.Ca is providing more and more readers with a welcome alternative and an ideological home.

We revealed the incursion of anti-Israel progressive elements such as IfNotNow into our communities. We have exposed the distorted hateful agenda of the “progressive” left political radicals who brought Linda Sarsour to our cities, and we were first to report on many disturbing incidents of Nazi-based hate towards Jews across Canada.

But we can’t do it alone. We need your HELP!

Our ability to thrive and grow in 2020 and beyond depends on the generosity of committed readers and supporters like you.

Monthly support is a great way to help us sustain our operations. We greatly appreciate any contributions you can make to support Jewish Journalism.

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