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Roman Abramovich, Ukrainian negotiators suffered suspected poisoning — report

Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, owner of England's Chelsea Football Club, leaves the high court in London for a lunch break, October 31, 2011. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)
Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, owner of England's Chelsea Football Club, leaves the high court in London for a lunch break, October 31, 2011. (AP Photo/Sang Tan)

Russian-Jewish billionaire Roman Abramovich and members of Ukraine’s negotiating team suffered a suspected poisoning earlier this month after meeting in Kyiv, the Wall Street Journal reports.

According to the report, which cited people familiar with the matter, Abramovich and two top Ukrainian negotiators had symptoms such as red eyes, tearing and peeling skin on their hands faces.

The people cited in the report blame hardliners in Moscow whom they accuse of wanting to scuttle the talks to end the war, but a person close to Abramovich says it wasn’t clear who was behind the suspected poisoning.

The conditions of Abramovich and the other two have reportedly improved and their lives aren’t in danger.

The report also says Abramovich, who has been sanctioned following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, has been meeting with negotiators in various countries and also has met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who was unaffected.

Abramovich, who holds Israeli citizenship, is best known for his ownership of English soccer club Chelsea FC, which he has put up for sale in wake of the Western sanctions.

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