The mother of Putin ally Yevgeny Prigozhin successfully contested her place on the European sanctions list at the EU’s second-highest court on Wednesday.
Just family ties are not reason enough to put someone on this list, to rule The court in Luxembourg. “Even if Yevgeny Prigozhin is responsible for actions that undermine the territorial integrity, sovereignty and independence of Ukraine, the relationship between the lady and her son is exclusively family, and therefore not sufficient to justify her inclusion in the sanctions list.”
The ruling means the 83-year-old Russian can return to the EU and can also access her bank balances, if she has them with European banks. After the Russian invasion of Ukraine, she and other Russian officials were sanctioned by European countries for allegedly owning a number of companies founded by her son. However, Violetta Prigozhina’s lawyers were able to prove that she has not been involved in his companies since 2027, although she owns shares, the court said. Prigozhin’s wife is still on the sanctions list: she has not been to court either.
Heavy fighting around Bashmut
Yevgeny Prigozhin is the leader of the Russian mercenary group Wagner, a private military company active in several countries, most notably now in Ukraine, where it fights alongside regular units as part of the invasion of Moscow. Wagner also takes part in the fierce fighting around Bashmuyt. Prigozhin personally has close ties to President Putin, and is also known as “Putin’s chef”, having previously run restaurants and cooked for the president.
The General Court of the European Union, chaired by Dutchman Mark van der Woode, is the second highest European court. The EU has two months to appeal to the Court of Justice of the European Union, also based in Luxembourg.
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