Business that Joe Biden’s son, Hunter, “have had or might have” in Ukraine has nothing to do with Moscow, President Vladimir Putin said, adding that, although Hunter made “good money” there, Russia sees “nothing criminal” in it.
“It doesn’t concern us. It concerns the Americans and the Ukrainians,” Putin said when asked about Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine during an interview with Russia’s Rossiya-1 Channel that was aired late on Sunday.
The Russian president said he was aware of “at least one company” Joe Biden’s son “de-facto headed,” adding that Hunter “apparently made very good money” from this endeavor. Still, Putin said he does not “see anything criminal about it”
Hunter Biden joined the board of Burisma Holdings – one of Ukraine’s largest private natural gas producers – in 2014, soon after the violent coup in Ukraine and when his father was still the US Vice President under Barack Obama. Hunter stayed on the board until his term expired in 2019.
This issue was repeatedly raised by the US President Donald Trump, who accused Joe Biden of influencing the US policy towards Ukraine and even pressing Kiev into firing a then-Ukrainian prosecutor general to supposedly help his son’s company from an anti-corruption probe.
Hunter’s business interests in Ukraine – and, allegedly, in Russia – were once again invoked by Trump during the final presidential debate on Thursday. Trump claimed that Biden “and his family” were “raking in” a fortune from Ukraine, Russia and China.
Putin refused to weigh in on the speculations that the former Vice President himself was “getting a lot of money from Russia,” as insinuated by Trump, responding “no comment” when asked about the claims.
The Russian leader likewise noted he was unaware of any “commercial relationships” between Hunter Biden and Yelena Baturina, the widow of ex-Moscow mayor, Yury Luzhkov – another issue raised by Trump during the debate. One of Russia’s richest women, Baturina, used to run an investment and construction company and later founded an investment fund. The Russian president said that the businesswoman and billionaire “has had numerous business contacts” but he does not know if there have been any Americans among them.
As for his own relations with Luzhkov, Putin described them as “respectful” and “trusting” but added that they had always remained strictly official.
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