Reports in the press have suggested that Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich suffered suspected poisoning while participating in peace talks near the Belarus-Ukraine border. The former Chelsea footballer and the two Ukrainian peace negotiators were also affected by the alleged attack. While one Russian news outlet said Abramovich was the victim of a sting operation orchestrated by hardliners‚ a US official says the symptoms were more likely caused by environmental factors. The suspected poisoning happened on 3-4 March during a meeting between Abramovich and representatives of the Ukrainian government. During the talks‚ Abramovich was acting as a mediator between the two countries and the former was reportedly the target of hardline Russians. While Abramovich recovered from his sexal assault‚ his health has been a major concern. On three and four March‚ Abramovich was seen at Tel Aviv airport and later at the Russian Embassy in London. The European Union and the UK imposed sanctions on Abramovich earlier this month over alleged links to President Vladimir Putin. The former Chelsea manager flew to Istanbul‚ Turkey‚ to seek medical treatment. He was undergoing an MRI and blood tests‚ which indicated that he was suffering from an overdose. The suspect was Rustem Umerov‚ a Ukrainian parliamentary deputy and negotiator. His condition was described as severed nerves. Abramovich was reportedly treated in Turkey‚ and he remains a participant in the negotiations. The suspected poisoning was carried out at a conference in Kiev on Wednesday‚ and his symptoms were consistent with chemical weapons‚ according to the Bellingcat intelligence group. The Wall Street Journal said the alleged attack was organised by Russian hardliners. However‚ a Ukrainian government official told the paper that the amount of poison used was insufficient to cause life-threatening damage to the delegates. The alleged attack was a distraction aimed at scaring attendees‚ but it remains unclear who was responsible for it. A Russian news agency‚ Bellingcat‚ said Abramovich was not a victim of the attack. He was at the talks with Rustem Umerov‚ a Russian parliamentary depute. Abramovich reportedly lost his sight for several hours. In the meantime‚ he underwent medical treatment in Turkey. Despite the poisoning‚ the media reported that Abramovich's public image had deteriorated significantly. Earlier this month‚ Abramovich and the Ukrainian peace negotiators visited Poland for peace talks. There‚ they were accompanied by the Crimean Tatar lawmaker Rustem Umerov‚ a member of the Russian negotiating team. During the initial stage of the talks‚ they traveled to Istanbul. During the trip‚ the oligarch's skin began to peel off. The oligarch's eyes were swollen and his skin appeared to be dry. The Ukrainian Foreign Minister‚ Shaun Walker‚ said he confirmed that Abramovich was reportedly poisoned during talks. The Russian billionaire reportedly lost his eyesight and suffered from skin peeling.
The Wall Street Journal initially reported the story‚ but a Ukrainian official said the allegations are unfounded. The Wall Street Journal is now calling for an investigation into the case. In the meantime‚ the two sides are still at a stand-off in peace negotiations. The Kremlin and Abramovich both remained in the talks despite the incident. The Russian negotiator Rustem Umerov tweeted that he was fine. He urged the public not to trust unverified reports. The Ukrainian government confirmed Abramovich's involvement in the talks‚ but it did not immediately respond to a tweet from the oligarch. Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich‚ a former Chelsea player‚ has been brokering a peace deal between Ukraine and Russia. While he was in Ukraine for peace talks‚ he suffered from a suspected poisoning while taking part in the negotiations. Although he recovered from the symptoms‚ his health was in question and he received medical attention immediately. Abramovich's health has been deteriorating since he was photographed in a Tel Aviv airport. The symptoms of suspected poisoning included red eyes‚ constant tearing‚ and peeling skin. In addition to that‚ Abramovich also lost his sight for several hours. He was hospitalized in Turkey‚ where he was taking part in talks with Rustem Umerov. The oligarch's condition has since improved and he has continued to be involved in the talks. The alleged poisoning was in a petrochemical.