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Russia’s oligarch elite speak out against Putin’s invasion of Ukraine


Mikhail Fridman (Alfa Group Supervisory Board Chairman) attends the 2017 Atlases Russian Business Forum in Crocus City Hall.

Artyom Geodakyan | Tass | Getty Images

Some of Vladimir Putin’s most wealthy inner circle are speaking out against the invasion of Ukraine, as Europe and the U.S. increase sanctions on Russia’s yachts and mansions owned by the oligarchs.

While none have directly referenced the Russian president, the rare sounds of dissent from his high-profile allies — many of whose fortunes have close ties to the Kremlin — signal the widening fissure among Russian voices.

Mikhail Fridman was the founder of Russia’s biggest private bank Alfa Bank, and one of Russia’s most powerful men. He called for an end of “tragedy and bloodshed” Friday.

In letter to staffAt LetterOne in London, the Ukrainian-born native said that he is “convinced” that war cannot be an answer.

In a letter that was first published by The Financial Times, he stated: “I feel deeply connected to Ukrainian and Russian citizens and see the current conflict for them both.”

He said that he did not make any political statements. “I’m a businessman and have responsibilities towards my many thousand employees in Russia, Ukraine.” But, war cannot be an answer. Two nations that have been close for many years will be hurt by this crisis.

Fridman owns a wide range of businesses, including mobile carrier Veon. Kaan Terzioglu, CEO of Veon told CNBC Monday that it was important to stop the war “as soon as possible.”

“I believe this madness should end as soon as possible,” he stated, noting that his company offers internet connectivity to those fleeing from the conflict.

Additional sanctions are being imposed on Russia’s oligarchs

Monday: The European Union placed sanctionsFridman was present with Petr Aven and Alexei Mordashov (steel magnate), as well as a few other super-wealthy Russians.

Fridman said Tuesday that while he wasn’t sure if Russia will react against the invasion, he felt that an unfair blanket ban on Russians conducting business anywhere in the world was fair.

Mordashov, however, said the fighting is a “tragedy between two fraternal folks” and should be stopped. However, he added that he shouldn’t be an international target for sanctions.

I have nothing to do whatsoever with current geopolitical tensions. He said that he didn’t get why the sanctions were imposed on him.

Oleg Deripaska (a metals magnate) wrote last week on Telegram: “Peace and stability are very important!” “Negotiations should begin as soon possible!”

Oleg Tinkov is currently in treatment for cancer and is the billionaire founder Tinkoff Bank. Tinkov called it “unimaginable and unacceptable” and urged states not to use their funds on “war.”

Roman Abramovich was the billionaire owner, but he did not speak out, however, he transferred “stewardship” of Chelsea to a charity foundation. Also, he was reportedly involved in talksOn Monday, Belarusian President Vladimir Putin asked Belarus for his assistance in reaching a peaceful resolution.

High profile dissenters