NewsMedvedev's wine shipments linked to contentious messages on Telegram

Medvedev's wine shipments linked to contentious messages on Telegram

Medvedev's wine shipments linked to contentious messages on Telegram
Images source: © FORUM | Yekaterina Shtukina

8:31 AM EDT, March 10, 2024

Medvedev, who served as Russia's president from 2008 to 2012 and then as Prime Minister until 2020, is now the deputy chairman of the Security Council of the Russian Federation. Despite his reduced political influence, he remains vocal on social media, mainly targeting the West and Ukraine with his posts.

Connection between Medvedev's outbursts and wine deliveries

Medvedev's recent appearance at the Russian World Festival of Youth has drawn criticism. There, he derided Europeans as "slaves" and "animals" against a backdrop of edited images mocking Western politicians. His unabashed rhetoric matches well with the longstanding narrative of his drinking problem. His vineyards in Italy, unaffected by sanctions, continue to send premium wine to the former president, a fact unearthed by Russian investigative outlet "The Insider."

Ownership of the Tuscan winery Fattoria della Aiola is attributed to Medvedev. It's officially held by Furcina LTD, a Cypriot company owned by Ilya Eliseev, a close associate of Medvedev and a high-ranking official at Gazprombank, sanctioned by the USA and the UK, but not the EU. This technicality allows Eliseev to manage the winery without hindrance.

"The Insider" tracked wine shipments from Italy to Russia, revealing a pattern. For instance, two days after receiving a shipment from Fattoria della Aiola on June 17, 2022, Medvedev made a notable Telegram post harshly criticizing the European Union and its leadership. Another instance in July 2022 saw Medvedev disparaging EU leaders and US President Joe Biden shortly after another batch arrived. A similar pattern was observed in October 2022 and July 2023, with Medvedev's posts becoming increasingly alarmist following wine deliveries.

In addition to his Italian venture, Medvedev owns a vineyard in Krasnodar, Russia, which produces approximately 162,000 bottles of wine annually.

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