Comments and statements by Foreign Ministry Spokesman
Comment by the Information and Press Department regarding cooperation with Cyprus on Gazprom case
Moscow was surprised by Cyprus’s decision to cease cooperation with the Prosecutor General’s Office of Russia on the criminal case related to the purchase of Gazprom shares, a case which involves William Browder. Cyprus has denied entry to a Russian delegation that intended to conduct investigative activities within the agreed timeframe. The reason cited by the Cypriot authorities is Mr Browder’s court motion to cease cooperating with Russia because this is allegedly a “politically motivated” case.
We have serious doubts regarding the legality of this decision, which was made public before the court ruled on Mr Browder’s motion, and also regarding the independence of making this decision. Such actions by our Cypriot partners stand in stark contrast to the standards and nature of our bilateral interstate relations, which have always been noted for their high level of mutual trust and assistance, as evidenced by our intensive political contacts at all levels, especially at the top level.
We hope that attempts to add a political dimension to criminal investigations will be abandoned in favour of an objective and fair investigation aimed at identifying the guilty persons and holding them responsible.