24 May, 04:39 PM

Russians bypassing banking sanctions by getting cards in Belarus, says President’s Office

Russian citizens are side-stepping international sanctions by going to Belarus to be issued Visa and MasterCard bank cards, Volodymyr Zelensky’s chief-of-staff Andriy Yermak said on the Telegram messenger.

Russia's war against Ukraine - the main events of May 24

"Russians are bypassing sanctions through Belarus,” Yermak said.

“Travel to Minsk is getting popular for the so-called ‘banking tourism’ to get Visa and MasterCard cards issued by Belarusian banks. You can pay with those abroad and in international online stores. There is also a demand for opening accounts in banks in Uzbekistan."

The head of the Office of the President noted that Visa and MasterCard cards issued in Russia cannot be used abroad for international online payments. Both payment card network processors have stopped working in the country since March 6 due to the full-scale invasion of Ukraine by Russia.

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