MOSCOW (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin is spending billions of taxpayers’ rubles on 20 luxurious residences, 43 jets and four yachts, a top opposition leader claimed Tuesday.
All heads of state use government property and funds for presentation purposes, but Boris Nemtsov says Putin’s lifestyle is far more lavish than his Western counterparts.
In the report released Tuesday, Nemtsov, a former deputy prime minister, estimated that the maintenance of Putin’s residences, jets and cars alone costs $2.5 billion a year.
“Putin has been mistaking government property for his own for a long time,” Nemtsov said. “This is an insolent, cynical and luxurious lifestyle at taxpayers’ expense.”
Putin’s press service was not immediately available for comment Tuesday but his spokesman had earlier words on the report.
“All of this is government property and Putin uses it all legally as an elected president,” Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov told the RBK daily on Monday after parts of the report had appeared online.
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