Karin Kneissl said that she had decided to leave Austria because of the threats and accusations she received in the media in the fall of 2020. She went to France, and from there to Lebanon, where, according to the ex-minister, she feels freer 756600833287001.webp 673w” type=”image/webp” media=”(max-width: 320px) and (-webkit-min-device-pixel-ratio: 2), (max-width: 320px) and (min-resolution : 192dpi)” >
Former Austrian Foreign Minister Karin Kneissl, who left the country, said in an interview with RT DE that she had made this decision in the fall of 2020, even before the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine and joining the board of directors of Rosneft.
Kneissl called this decision forced, made because of the threats she received. According to the ex-minister, she received threats by mail, and she was also attacked on the streets of Vienna. “I also received letters in my mailbox, but no one wanted to take it seriously. The content was something like this: Russian pig, you need to be hanged, Putin's prostitute, you need to cut your throat and bury it alive, and we will make sure that you are buried that way, — she said.
According to the former foreign minister, she was accused in the media of working for the KGB and espionage, as well as cruelty to animals, in Austria there was a “de facto ban on work”; for Kneisl. Because of this, she moved to France, but there, according to the former minister, the secret services prevented her from renting an apartment.
From France, Kneisl went to Lebanon, where, according to her, she feels freer, despite the bureaucracy and domestic difficulties. “When I talk about freedom in Lebanon— this is just a hope, because I still don’t know if it works in practice: for example, we were able to fly to Moscow for a week and I won’t get big problems upon my return, — she added.
Kneissl first spoke about her departure in May of this year, without specifying when it happened. Two months later, she announced that she was in Lebanon.
Kneisl headed the Austrian Foreign Ministry in 2017-2019 under Chancellor Sebastian Kurz. In 2018, she married Wolfgang Meilinger, Russian President Vladimir Putin attended the wedding. He stayed at the event for about an hour, in particular, during this time he danced with the bride. In June 2021, Kneisl joined the board of directors of Rosneft. as an independent director, but left this post less than a year later.
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Kneissl's departure from the company's board of directors was preceded by a European Parliament resolution called for sanctions against the ex-Foreign Minister. They also proposed to include in the sanctions list other “European board members of large Russian companies and politicians who continue to receive money from Russia” if they do not leave their posts.
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