Chelsea Owner; Roman Abramovich ‘granted Israeli Citizenship’

Roman Abramovich, the billionaire owner of Chelsea football club, has been granted Israeli citizenship and will move to Tel Aviv, according to local media reports.

Abramovich’s British visa had expired and sources told the Reuters news agency it was taking longer than usual to get it renewed. The British government has declined to comment on his case.

The Times of Israel said that Israel’s interior ministry confirmed the development on Monday.

According to the Ynet website, which belongs to Israel’s biggest selling daily, Yedioth Ahronoth, Abramovich flew to Tel Aviv on Monday and received documents confirming his status as an Israeli citizen. He has reportedly bought a property in the city.

An Israeli immigration absorption ministry spokeswoman declined to comment on the report, citing individual privacy. But a spokeswoman for the Population Administration, which oversees border control, confirmed to Reuters that Abramovich was in Israel. His spokesman also declined to comment.

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