[Global Times correspondent Yin Xinyu in Russia, Global Times correspondent Liu Haoran and Liu Yupeng] “Black Sea Palace” is claimed by Putin! Opponents of the Russian government have long attacked Russian President Vladimir Putin with a set of super luxury palace buildings on the shore of the Black Sea as “evidence of corruption”. However, the battle of public opinion has changed dramatically in the past weekend: Putin’s former “judo partner” and Russian billionaire alkady Rotenberg appeared to refute rumors and openly “claim” the luxury villa in the face of the media.
Russia’s controversial opposition leader navaline and his anti-corruption Foundation recently produced an investigation video entitled “Putin’s Palace: the biggest bribe in history”, which tells us about the luxury of the villa in two hours: the $1.5 billion building on the Black Sea coast of Russia’s grenjik area covers an area of 17600 square meters In the villa, there are all kinds of entertainment facilities, such as theater, casino, dance hall and water pipe room, and even an underground ice rink. The decoration of the villa is extremely luxurious, and even the toilet brush in the bathroom is 700 Euro Italian goods. The video, which has been viewed more than 100 million times since it was uploaded to youtube, has triggered protests in many places in Russia.
Russian news agency reported that Putin said on the 25th that any property in the “investigation” does not belong to him or his relatives. Russian President’s press secretary Peskov also said earlier that the owner of the “Palace” of glingik is one or several entrepreneurs, and the Kremlin has no right and will not disclose the name of the owner of the building. Finally, Russian entrepreneur Rothenberg personally refuted the rumor on January 30, saying that he bought the luxury industry two years ago. “Now I have a showdown. This villa is mine,” he told the media He explained that the composition of the property rights of the property was complex. He had many creditors before, but he became the winner in the end. However, he did not disclose the financial details of the deal. Mr. Rothenberg said he did not intend to make the luxury villa a private residence, but wanted to transform it into an apartment hotel. A Russian TV station revealed that the reporter of the station went into the interior of the building to watch, and the video showed that construction was in progress there, and concrete was everywhere. According to Russia’s “businessman” reported that Rotenberg that the construction site is not ideal. The project is expected to be completed in a year and a half to two years. “Given these rumors, we will try to complete the construction faster,” he said
The Russian President’s “small” personal “rescue” has aroused the attention of public opinion in many countries. According to media reports, Rothenberg, 69, is Jewish. He was born in Leningrad (now St. Petersburg) in 1951 and graduated from St. Petersburg National Sports University in 1978. In his early years, he worked as a judo coach. Rotenberg met Putin when he was a teenager. At that time, they studied “Sangbo” in the same club. According to the new Yorker magazine, the two have forged a deep friendship in the process of training together and competing everywhere. According to another classmate, retired KGB agent vaskilin, they were famous “troublemakers” and loved pranks. Once, they threw stones on balloons during a Labor Day parade just to “listen”. Another old friend also recalled that they often went to the toilet together to scare people and rob other children’s candy.
Later, although their career directions were quite different, they often got together for the sake of schoolmate friendship. In 1990, when Putin was in the mayor’s office in Leningrad, he had to meet with Rotenberg from time to time. First, he wanted to keep fit, and second, he wanted to exchange skills. In the eyes of the media, Putin, who had received strict training from the KGB, cherished the friendship he had established as a child. Rothenberg also showed considerable loyalty to Putin: in 2014, the U.S. government imposed sanctions on Putin’s cronies over Ukraine, but the move made these friends more close to him. “I have great respect for Putin. I think he is the chosen man sent to Russia by God,” he said publicly
Rothenberg’s business involves energy, construction and banking. Together with his brother Boris, he owns stroygazmontazh group, Russia’s largest gas pipeline and power supply line construction company. Since 2011, he has been listed as a global billionaire by Forbes magazine. As of January 2021, its net assets are about $2.7 billion.