No date set for Ruth Davidson’s meal with Putin ‘crony’

Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire
Scottish Conservative leader Ruth Davidson. Picture: Yui Mok/PA Wire
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No date has been set for a lunch between Ruth Davidson and a Russian banker who paid £20,000 at a Tory fund-raiser to win the meeting with the party’s Scottish leader.

Lubov Chernukhin, whose husband was Vladimir Putin’s deputy finance minister, bid for the meal at the Tory Black and White fund-raising ball in February. A Scottish Conservative spokesperson said: “There’s no date for it.”

The SNP has accused Ms Davidson of “rank hypocrisy” following the Scottish Tory leader’s criticism of Alex Salmond’s work for the Russian state broadcaster RT.

Ms Chernukhin has made a number of donations at the lavish annual black-tie Tory fund-raiser, paying £30,000 this year to have dinner with Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson, and £160,000 in 2014 to play tennis with David Cameron and Boris Johnson.

Challenged about the tennis match, Mr Cameron denied claims that Ms Chernukhin was one of the Russian president’s “cronies”.