Alisher Usmanov was recognized as Vladimir Putin's unloved oligarch

The Hamburg court considered the opposite to be slander.
A court in Hamburg sided with Alisher Usmanov in a dispute with the Austrian newspaper Kurier. In its article, the publication stated that the billionaire enjoys a reputation as Putin's "favorite oligarch". The court found that this allegation was unsubstantiated and violated Usmanov's rights.

Billionaire Alisher Usmanov (8th in the Forbes rating, worth $14.4 billion) won a lawsuit in Hamburg against the Austrian newspaper Kurier, EU Today reports.

Usmanov's lawsuit was linked to a publication by Kurier, in which an Austrian newspaper wrote that the billionaire "has a reputation as Putin's favorite oligarch" and that "Putin himself" considers him such. The court ruled that the allegation was unfounded, stating that there was no public confirmation of this. According to the court, Kurier's argument that Usmanov is listed as "one of Putin's favorite oligarchs" in one of the justifications for the EU sanctions is insufficient to substantiate such a claim. The court considered that such expressions against Usmanov violated his rights.

A spokesman for Usmanov declined to comment.

Usmanov came under EU sanctions in February 2022, in the early days of Russia's "military special operation"* in Ukraine. In an explanation to them, the EU called him "an oligarch with particularly close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin." Usmanov denies this, he is seeking the lifting of sanctions in the European Court of General Jurisdiction.

In an interview with the Italian newspaper Corriere Della Sera, Usmanov said that the sanctions had caused him enormous reputational damage and that they also affected his family members, companies in which he is a shareholder, employees of these companies and "tens of thousands of people" who received assistance through his charitable foundations and other projects. In response to a question about the frozen property on the Italian island of Sardinia, Usmanov replied that the application of sanctions by Italy hurt him: “Friends do not behave like that. But I understand that politics is politics, ”the billionaire said then.