Valentin Yumashev, the son-in-law of former Russian leader Boris Yeltsin who helped put Vladimir Putin to power, has given up his role as an adviser to the Kremlin, two people familiar with Yumashev’s thinking told Reuters.
Yumashev was an unpaid adviser with limited influence over Putin’s decision-making. Still, his departure removes one of the last ties in Putin’s government to Yeltsin’s rule, a period of liberal reforms and opening up Russia to the rest of the world.
Putin ordered his forces to attack Ukraine on February 24 in an invasion that NATO military alliance says is an act of unwarranted aggression and which Russia calls a “special operation” needed to capture Russian speakers in eastern Ukraine. To protect.
In March, Anatoly Chubais, another senior figure of the Yeltsin era, left his role as the Kremlin’s special envoy.
Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Yumashev’s departure from his adviser role and did not return a call to his mobile number.
Yumashev did not respond to a request for comment from Reuters.
Lyudmila Telen, first deputy executive director of the Boris Yeltsin Presidential Center foundation, where Yumashev is a supervisory board member, told Reuters that Yumashev had resigned from his role as an adviser to the Kremlin in April.
When asked why he left, she replied, “It was his initiative.”
A second person familiar with Yumashev’s thinking, who spoke anonymously, also said Yumashev ceased serving as a presidential adviser in April.
Under Yeltsin, president of Russia from 1991 to 1999, Yumashev was an adviser to the Kremlin and later chief of staff of the Kremlin. He is married to Yeltsin’s daughter Tatyana.
Yumashev headed the presidential administration in 1997 when Putin, a former KGB spy who had landed a mid-level administrative job in the Kremlin a year earlier, was promoted to Kremlin deputy chief of staff.
That promotion provided the springboard for Putin to be anointed as Yeltsin’s heir apparent and to win the 2000 presidential election after Yeltsin stepped down.
Although Putin’s policies have diverged from Yeltsin’s values over the years, the Russian leader has maintained ties to the former first family.
According to the Kremlin’s website, Putin visited Yeltsin’s daughter Tatyana at her home in January 2020 to congratulate her on her birthday.
The adult daughter of Valentin Yumashev and Tatyana, Maria, posted on her Instagram account on February 24 an image of the Ukrainian flag, along with the words “No to war” and a broken heart emoji.