As Vladimir Putin’s forces suffer humiliating failures in Ukraine, the name of his daughter’s boyfriend could rub salt in his wounds.
A new investigation has revealed that 35-year-old Ekaterina Tikhonova is in a relationship with Russian ballet dancer Igor Zelensky.
Sanctions against her have stopped her flight from Moscow to Munich to be with her man, who has the same last name as Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky.
Her partner, with whom she has a two-year-old daughter, is a lead dancer and, more recently, a top director who until recently headed the Bavarian State Ballet.
The discovery comes from an investigation by Russia’s independent news outlet IStories and Germany’s Der Spiegel.
Earlier, Tikhonov, an acrobatics dancer who became a scientist and entrepreneur, was married to 40-year-old Russia’s youngest billionaire Kirill Shamalov.
They broke up around 2017, when she entered into a relationship with 52-year-old Zelensky, who was married to two daughters and a son with choreographer Yana Serebryakova.
Putin was furious against Russians living in the West, but his own daughter often traveled to Munich with full state support and security to spend time with her partner.
Until the invasion of Ukraine began earlier this year, she seems to have lived with him in Germany
“In two years, from 2017 to 2019, the little girl’s mother had to fly many dozens of times on this route – from Moscow to Munich and back,” – said in a statement IStories.
The journalistic investigation revealed documents confirming the flights involving “Tikhonova, Zelensky, a child, nannies, security guards.”
It turned out that in two years she had flown to Munich “more than 50 times” to be with Zelensky.
He is known as one of the most successful ballet dancers in Russia – he has performed at the Mariinsky Theater in St. Petersburg and the New York Ballet Troupe. He was also a guest soloist of the London Royal Ballet.
An anonymous source provided documents, emails and passport data from Putin’s security service and Tikhonova’s bodyguard, Alexei Skrypchak, who allegedly bought the family’s plane tickets.
It is believed that Zelensky, who was born in Russia with Georgian roots, is not associated with the President of Ukraine.
He left the Bavarian State Ballet last month, apparently after refusing to condemn Putin’s bloody war in Ukraine.
Asked about his former boss, a source in Der Spiegel immediately said that Zelensky was “most likely a partner of Putin’s daughter.”
By the end of 2019, Tikhonova, apparently tired of constantly flying to Munich and decided to move to her boyfriend, the report said.
Apparently, the letter kept in Skrypchak’s archive testifies to that, investigators add.
In 2016, before taking office in Munich, and even before relations with Putin’s daughter, Zelensky commented on the consequences of Russia’s annexation of Crimea.
“I am not a politician, but they should sit at the same table and calm down. Art will save the world, ”he said.
It has long been rumored that he had high patrons in Moscow, but today’s revelation is the first time he has been linked to Putin’s family.
In March, launching an invasion of Ukraine, the Russian president struck at compatriots who loved life in the West.
“I do not condemn those who have a villa in Miami or on the French Riviera, who can not do without foie gras, oysters or so-called gender freedoms,” he said.
“The problem is not in this at all, but in the fact that many of these people are mentally there by nature, not here, not with our people, not with Russia.”
The managing director of the Bavarian State Opera, Serge Dorney, told Russian pranksters Vovan and Lexus that Zelensky’s departure from German ballet was linked to the war.
Obviously, thinking that he was talking to the Minister of Culture of Ukraine, he said: “We talked to him several times, and I forced him to conclude that he should leave.
“He did not make that decision himself. We talked to him, and I led him to this conclusion. “
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