VLADIMIR Putin’s alleged mistress has been hit by US sanctions just weeks after it was reported she is expecting the Russian president’s eighth child.
Alina Kabaeva, a former Olympic gymnast turned politician, was sanctioned for her “close relationship” with Putin, the US Treasury Department said.
The 69-year-old Russian president has reportedly been in a relationship for the past 13 years with Ms. Kabaeva, who is 30 years his junior.
In an announcement, the finance ministry said it appointed Kabaeva, who currently heads the pro-Kremlin National Media Group promoting the war in Ukraine.
Several other wealthy Russians were also sanctioned Tuesday by the Biden administration, in a further crackdown on Putin’s regime in the wake of the war in Ukraine.
“While innocent people suffer from Russia’s illegal war of aggression, Putin’s allies have enriched themselves and financed a lavish lifestyle,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said on Tuesday.
“The Treasury Department will use all means at our disposal to ensure that the Russian elites and the Kremlin’s instigators are held accountable for their complicity in a war that has cost countless lives,” she continued.
“Along with our allies, the United States will also continue to swallow revenues and equipment underlying Russia’s unprovoked war in Ukraine.”
So far, the US has delayed imposing sanctions on Kabaeva, who was sanctioned by the UK and the EU earlier this year.
As a result of the move, all U.S. properties owned by Kabaeva will be blocked.
Kremlin critics, such as imprisoned Russian rights activist Alexey Navalny, have long called for harsh sanctions against Kabaeva for accusing her news channel of leading the way in portraying Western commentary on the invasion of Ukraine as a disinformation campaign.
For her part, Kabaeva never confirmed her relationship with the Russian president.
The news comes just weeks after it was claimed that Putin would have his eighth child with Kabaeva.
It was reported on the General SVR Telegram channel – allegedly run by Kremlin insiders.
“We have already reported that Alina Kabaeva, the cohabitant of the President of Russia, is pregnant,” the message read.
“Yesterday the sex of the unborn child was revealed – this is a girl.”
According to the anonymous poster, the news “didn’t please the future father and president of Russia at all”, who went on to say that he “had enough children already, and more daughters”.
While innocent people suffer from Russia’s illegal war of aggression, Putin’s allies have enriched themselves and financed a lavish lifestyle
Kabaeva reportedly already has two young boys and twin girls with Putin.
The former MP from President Putin’s United Russia party posed half-naked for a men’s magazine in 2004 and was once called “Russia’s most flexible woman.”
Putin is said to have met Kabaeva around this time, when he was married and she was dating a police officer.
He was pictured handing her a medal in 2001 before she was stripped of six of her World Cup medals for doping.
A romance between the couple was first suggested in 2008 when a newspaper from Putin’s ex-KGB spy colleague Alexander Lebedev claimed to be in a relationship.
Putin announced his divorce from Lyudmila, his first wife and the mother of his two adult children, in 2013, and a spokesman denied he was having an affair, claiming he was too busy.
In April of this year, the so-called “First Mistress” held a pro-military parade in a £2k designer dress.
She was seen leading a patriotic gymnastics ballet festival accompanied by a uniformed military choir in Russia.
The controversial Z symbol featured prominently in the events, including patriotic songs.
Kabaeva, who won Olympic medals in Sydney in 2000 and Athens in 2004, has reportedly been hiding in a Swiss chalet with the Russian president’s secret children.
In March, the singer of an Abba tribute group revealed that they had played a private performance for Putin and his mistress on the Russian leader’s private property.
Also named in the latest round of US sanctions is oligarch Andrey Grigoryevich Guryev, who owns the second largest mansion in London after Buckingham Palace – the 25-bedroom Witanhurst Estate.
His superyacht, the $120 million Alfa Nero, was also identified as blocked property.
Guryev’s son was also sanctioned, as was his Russian investment company Dzhi AI Invest 000.
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