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Roman Abramovich can enter United Kingdom after 'getting Israel passport'

29 May, 2018, 15:42 | Author: Lucille Rivera
  • A source close to Chelsea owner Roman Abramovich declined to comment on a report that the tycoon made a flying visit to Tel Aviv in order to obtain Israeli citizenship

Abramovich returned to Russian Federation when his UK visa expired, meaning he could not be present to see Chelsea lift the FA Cup for the eighth time in the club's history with a 1-0 victory against Manchester United at Wembley last weekend.

An official at Nativ, a department of Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's office dealing with Jewish communities in the ex-Soviet Union, said Abramovich had applied for an immigration visa at Israel's embassy in Moscow, the station said earlier on its website.

According to Israeli media, Abramovich has been a regular visitor to Israel, and has bought a property in Tel Aviv close to the Mediterranean coast.

The Russian billionaire flew to Tel Aviv on Monday after receiving confirmation that he was eligible for Israeli citizenship under the Law of Return, which allows Jews to become citizens of the country.

The move to Israel comes after Abramovich was unable to extend his visa in the United Kingdom amid a diplomatic spat between London and Moscow.

An Israeli immigration absorption ministry spokeswoman declined to comment on the report citing individual privacy, but a spokeswoman for the Population Administration that oversees border control confirmed Abramovich was in Israel.

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Abramovich, 51, would be the richest person in Israel.

It was not immediately clear if there was a direct link between Britain's harder line on Russian oligarchs and Abramovich's visa delay. It quoted two unnamed sources as saying the football team owner's British visa expired in April.

Mr Abramovich is believed to have returned to Russian Federation after his visa expired and he did not attend Chelsea's 1-0 victory over Manchester United in the FA Cup on May 20. The government has declined to comment on the case.

He will live in a mansion in Tel Aviv's neighborhood of Neve Tzedek, a former hotel he purchased from Israeli Hollywood actress Gal Gadot, Ynet reported.

Holders of Israeli passports can travel to Britain without a visa for short periods of time and can stay as long as six months.



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