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Roman Abramovich Suffered A Suspected Poisoning At Peace Talks With Ukraine

Roman Abramovich Suffered A Suspected Poisoning At Peace Talks With Ukraine

The Russian billionaire is believed to have been poisoned at peace talks in Kyiv

Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich has suffered symptoms of suspected poisoning during peace talks earlier this month.

A spokesperson has confirmed to the BBC that the suspected attack happened during the peace talks between Ukraine and Russia, that took place in Kyiv on the night of 3-4 March. Three members of the delegation - including Abramovich - started experiencing symptoms in the hours following.

It is believed chemical weapons were used.

Abramovich's symptoms reportedly included red eyes and constant and painful tearing and peeling skin on the hands and face, a source told Sky News.

The Chelsea FC owner lost his sight for several hours and was treated in Turkey, The Guardian's Shaun Walker said, but he is now recovering and is 'fine'.

The Chelsea FC owner is recovering, according to reports.

Investigative website Bellingcat has claimed the three members affected by the alleged poisoning 'consumed only chocolate and water in the hours before the symptoms appeared'.

It also said the dosage and type of toxin was likely insufficient to cause life-threatening damage and was 'most likely was intended to scare'.

In a series of tweets, the investigative website stated that Abramovich, along with another Russian entrepreneur, had taken part in the negotiations alongside Ukraine’s MP Rustem Umerov. Following the alleged poisoning, the group of negotiators drove from Kyiv to Lviv on the way to Poland and then Istanbul, to continue informal negotiations with the Russian side.

"According to two consulted CW experts and a doctor, the symptoms were most consistent with variants of porphyrin, organophosphates, or bicyclic substances. A definitive determination was not possible due to the absence of specialized laboratory equipment near the victims," Bellingcat tweeted.

"The experts said the dosage and type of toxin used was likely insufficient to cause life-threatening damage, and most likely was intended to scare the victims as opposed to cause permanent damage. The victims said they were not aware of who might have had an interest in an attack."

Earlier this month, Abramovich was one of seven to be hit by the UK government's latest sanctions against oligarchs, accused of having the 'blood of the Ukrainian people on their hands'.

The 55-year-old is accused of having strong ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin and remains 'one of the few oligarchs from the 1990s to maintain prominence under Putin', according to the government. Abramovich has denied these claims.

"Abramovich is associated with a person who is/has been involved in destabilising Ukraine and undermining/threatening territorial integrity, sovereignty & independence of Ukraine, namely Vladimir Putin, with whom (he) has had close relationship for decades," the government's statement on the sanctions reads.

Featured Image Credit: Alamy

Topics: Russia, World News, Crime