Exiled billionaire and former de facto leader of Karabakh detained in Armenia
Detention of Ruben Vardanyan (photo - dsx.gov.az)

The State Border Service of Azerbaijan reported that it detained the "ex-state minister" of Nagorno-Karabakh Ruben Vardanyan, reads the department's update.

Border guards detained Vardanyan on Wednesday when he tried to cross the Lachin border crossing towards the Armenian town of Goris.

The border guards add that the detained businessman was brought to Baku and handed over to the relevant authorities to make an "appropriate decision" about him.

The businessman's wife Veronika Zonabend confirmed the fact of her husband's arrest. She stated that he was arrested and "taken prisoner".

On September 1, 2022, Vardanyan announced that he was renouncing his Russian citizenship. The businessman added that he accepted the offer to head the so-called government of the unrecognized Nagorno-Karabakh.

On September 12, 2023, the Russian edition of Forbes wrote that Russian businessmen are rewriting their biographies online to avoid Western sanctions. Ruben Vardanyan was among the names mentioned by the media.