ST. PETERSBURG, May 24. /TASS/. Co-owners of Russia's Alfa-Bank Mikhail Fridman and Peter Aven represented the interests of their business, not the interests of Russian President Vladimir Putin at a round table in the Atlantic Council in Washington, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Thursday.
He was commenting on the statement of opponents of that meeting who called Fridman and Aven Putin’s emissaries.
"They are by no means Putin envoys, in this case they represented one of the largest business entities in Russia and only this entity." Of course, they cannot represent the president of Russia," Peskov stressed.
Earlier, a number of media outlets reported that on May 21, a closed-door meeting involving Aven and Fridman took place at the headquarters of the Atlantic Council (a non-governmental think tank lobbying NATO interests) in the US capital. According to the media, among those participating in that meeting were Director of the Eurasian Center of the Atlantic Council, John Herbst, representatives of various official US entities, including the US Treasury, as well as representatives of large companies, and various analysts.
Aven and Friedman are among the Russian businessmen and officials who were put on the so-called Kremlin's List cobbled together by the US Treasury in January. The publication of this report was part of the implementation of the Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA). This document, signed by US President Donald Trump on August 2 last year, provides for tougher sanctions against Russia, Iran and North Korea.