Murky Financial Deals
Cyprus became a major destination for Russian capital after the fall of the Soviet Union, largely thanks to a double-tax treaty signed in 1982. The island state, which allows non-EU citizens to open companies, purchase real estate, and acquire citizenship via a fast-track Golden Visa program, became even more attractive to wealthy Russians when Cyprus joined the EU in 2004 and adopted the euro in 2008.
A senior fellow at the Alliance for Securing Democracy (ASD), a bipartisan group affiliated with the German Marshall Fund of the United States (GMF) and established in response to Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential elections, said Cyprus has undergone “state capture” by its offshore financial sector.
The system includes law firms with ties to politicians — like Chrysostomides’ — and the one Anastasiades established. The firms that provide assistance to people with