Foreign countries|Russian invasion
Some of the goods against EU sanctions make it to the border crossing between Georgia and Russia, but Russian oligarchs still transport brand new luxury cars bought from Europe across the border, some even several times a month, writes Dagens Nyheter.
of the Caucasus the border crossing of the Kazbegi pass in the mountains has become an important place for many oligarchs during the war of aggression against Russia.
Namely, luxury cars pass through the border crossing between Georgia and Russia, which eventually end up in the hands of the Russian wealthy, writes Dagens Nyheter (DN).
Located in a narrow pass, the checkpoint is located approximately 170 kilometers from Tbilisi, the capital of Georgia. Brand new European cars end up in Russia through it.
According to DN, the cars are loaded onto trucks, on which they cross the border to the Russian side.
“For the oligarchs, whose lives have been made miserable by EU sanctions,” DN writes.
One The Russian-Armenian businessman interviewed by DN says that he crossed the border between Georgia and Russia for the purpose of looking for a car eight times within one calendar month. He said he was taking two Mercedes Benz cars home to Moscow.
In addition to the luxury car rally, other traffic at the border crossing has increased significantly over the past year. When Russia announced its campaign last fall, tens of thousands of Russians fled across the border to Georgia to avoid being on the front lines. Border traffic was badly stuck at that time, writes DN.
Long ones truck queues head north from the border. They have sometimes stretched for up to a week, and sometimes the entire one-lane road is practically one long queue of trucks.
The border crossing point has become a kind of lifeline for Russia. Cross-border traffic has helped the Russian economy to cope with the effects of the sanctions imposed by the European Union. When the sanctions came into force, Russian ports and roads were practically closed.
The greater part of Georgia’s population of over three and a half million people oppose Russia and support Ukraine. Georgians have not forgotten the 2008 war, when Russia took over a fifth of Georgia.
However, the country’s government has chosen a slightly more cautious path, as it believes that it cannot afford to lose trade relations with Russia. That is why Georgia has not even imposed its own sanctions on its neighboring country. At the same time, it has promised that it will not be placed on the list of EU banned countries, a country through which products on the banned list should not pass.
However, signs of a change in direction are already in the air, writes DN. The Georgian opposition, among others, shares the same opinion.
The Georgian organization IDFI has mapped the traffic crossing the border from the start of the war of aggression until the end of September. During the period under review, 204 transports on their way to Russia were stopped at the border, and their border crossing permits were denied.
According to reports, shipments containing things such as machine and vehicle parts and airplanes – typical goods that the EU has put on the list of prohibited goods, because Russia could use them to its advantage in warfare – were banned from crossing the border.
However, luxury car traffic from Georgia to Russia is still rolling, at least for now.
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