Vadim Rabinovich

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Vadim Rabinovich
Вадим Зіновійович Рабінович
'ודים רבינוביץ
Rabinovich outdoors, in an open-necked shirt
Rabinovich in 2009
Personal details
Vadim Zinov'evich Rabinovich
Вадим Зіновійович Рабинович

(1953-08-04) 4 August 1953 (age 68)
Kharkiv, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union
  • Ukraine
  • Israel
Political partyOpposition Platform — For life
Children1 daughter, 2 sons
Residence(s)Bitan Aharon, Israel
Known for

Vadim Zinovyevich Rabinovich (transliterated from Ukrainian: Vadym Zinoviyovych Rabinovych) (Ukrainian: Вадим Зіновійович Рабінович; Russian: Вади́м Зино́вьевич Рабино́вич; Hebrew: ודים רבינוביץ'; born 4 August 1953 in Kharkiv, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union) is a Ukrainian Jewish businessman, politician, president of the All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress, leader of the Opposition Platform — For Life party, presidential candidate in the 2014 elections and former deputy of the Ukraine VIII faction of the Opposition Bloc.[1]


In 1970, Rabinovich graduated from Kharkiv Secondary School 45 and entered the Kharkiv National Automobile and Highway University. From 1973 to 1975, he performed mandatory military service in the Soviet Army's Air Defense Army. After leaving the army, Rabinovich was a foreman in the repair and construction department of the Kharkiv City Council [uk].

On January 20, 1980, he was arrested for "embezzlement of state funds in especially large amounts". Released after a nine-month investigation.[2]

Between 1980-1982, he heads wooden door production workshops.

Early in 1982, he was arrested for "embezzlement of state fund in especially large amounts".[3]

On February 10, 1984, he was sentenced to 14 years in forced labor camp by the Kharkiv regional court. Assets were confiscated and professional activity was prohibited for 5 years.

In early 1986, he began operating a business. Being released, Rabinovych along with Andrii Alioshyn establishes the Pinta firm engaged in trading in metal.

In fall 1993, Rabinovych was appointed as Ukrainian representative of Austrian-based Nordex company. Reputation of Nordex president and a USSR descent and Russian mafia baron Grigory Luchansky affects image of Rabinovych.[4]

In the early 1990s, Rabinovich made the aliyah to Israel.[5] In the late 1990s, Rabinovich returned to Ukraine.[5] A naturalized Israeli citizen, Rabinovich maintains homes in Ukraine and Israel.[6]

Rabinovich had his visa to the United States revoked in 1995, reportedly due to his links to arms dealers.[7]

In 1997, Rabinovich founded the 1+1 TV channel with Alexander Rodnyansky and Boris Fuksman. In 1996, he was appointed chairman of the Israeli-Ukrainian Chamber of Commerce. From 1997 to 2009, Rabinovich was president of the Stolichnye Novosti publishing company.

Rabinovich created and led the All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress in 1997.[7] He dissolved the organization in April 1999 and created the United Jewish Community of Ukraine [uk], which elected him its leader.[7] In 2008, Rabinovich acquired the NewsOne TV channel.

He also donated over 10 million to the restoration of the Hurva Synagogue.[8][9] According to some Jewish leaders, the businessman is trying to buy positive publicity to make up for the negative publicity generated by his financial and political activities.[7]

Rabinovich donated funds to help finance the reconstruction of Jerusalem's Old City Hurva Synagogue in a square named after him. Councilwoman Rachel Azaria petitioned[10] the Supreme Court of Israel to rescind the naming of the square, saying that Rabinovich was mistakenly though to be deceased. The high court agreed, revoking the naming of the square; Israeli law forbids the naming of streets and public venues in Jerusalem after living people.[11] Rabinovich supports Jewish charitable organisations, and is a benefactor of the golden menorah in Jerusalem's Temple Institute.

On June 24, 1999, the Security Service of Ukraine (SBU) bans Rabinovych from entering Ukraine for the period of 5 years.[12][a] According to the SBU press service, the decision is taken as Rabinovych's activity causes considerable damage to the economy of Ukraine. Later media report that the SBU decision is related to the fact that Rabinovych leaks information about the sale of ammunition by Ukraine to Yugoslavia despite then effective international embargo.[13] In 1999, Rabinovych naturalizes in the State of Israel.[14]

With help from Rabinovich, a monument to victims of terrorism was dedicated in Kyiv by Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko, US Ambassador John E. Herbst and Russian Ambassador Viktor Chernomyrdin on 11 September 2005. Since 1997, he has been president of the All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress. In 2001, Rabinovich became head of the Step Towards Unity Forum of Christians and Jews and co-chair of the European Jewish Parliament. From 2007 to 2013, he was a president of the Arsenal Kyiv football club.

In March 2013, Rabinovich survived an apparent attempt on his life in Kyiv; an explosive device was hurled into Rabinovich’s car near Klovska metro station.[15]

On 25 March 2014, Rabinovich registered with the Central Election Commission as a self-nominated candidate for the presidency of Ukraine.[16] This was partly to counter the characterization of the new Ukrainian government as anti-Semitic. After registering, Rabinovich said: "I want to destroy the myth about an anti-Semitic Ukraine which is spreading around the world. Probably I'm the most fortunate candidate. Today unification is needed, and I'm a unifying candidate. I have no maniacal thirst for power, I just want to help the country".[16] In the election, he received 2.25 percent of the vote,[17] with his best showing in Dnipropetrovsk and the Zaporizhia, Mykolaiv and Odessa regions. Rabinovich was elected to Parliament that year, after placing fourth on the Opposition Bloc electoral list.[18][19] In July 2016, Rabinovich suspended his membership with the party[20] and together with ex-Opposition Bloc member Yevhen Murayev created the political party For life (the former Center Party).[21] though he did not leave the Opposition Bloc faction in order not to lose his MP mandate.[13]

On 15 November 2018, Rabinovich announced he would not take part in the 2019 presidential election; but that he would top his party's For life list in the following 2019 Ukrainian parliamentary elections.[22]

2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine[edit]

On 14 February 2022 Rabinovich published a post on Facebook, stating that "the war has started" and blaming Western Ukraine for it.[23] Following the start of the 2022 Russian invasion of Ukraine, he left Ukraine and fled abroad.[24] Because of this, the Civil movement "Chesno" and the National Agency for Prevention of Corruption (NAPC) placed Rabinovich on a published list of people accused of treason, calling him a "collaborator, pro-Russian politician"; he was contacted by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency to comment on this, but did not reply.[25]

Political stance[edit]

Rabinovich stands for a non-aligned status of Ukraine, administrative reform and deep decentralization with maximum powers to the regional administrations.[26] Although he, according to OPORA monitoring, never votes for bills in support of decentralization in Ukraine.[26] Rabinovich stated that these bills do not correspond to the concept of decentralization, so he did not vote for them.[26] Rabinovich instead proposed to hold a referendum on the issue of abolishing the office of President of Ukraine, a new Constitution, including federalization, which he does not want to be named federalization "because that word makes people nervous."[26]

Personal life[edit]

Vadim Rabinovich is married to Irina Rabinovich and has three children: son Oleh (born 1973), daughter Katerina (born 1994), and son Jacob (born 2008).[27]

Media holdings[edit]

Rabinovich founded Media International Group (MIG), which included the Stolichnye Novosti publishing company, the MIGnovosti and MIGnews newspapers in Ukraine and Israel, respectively, and the Delovaya Nedelya business weekly, in 2000. MIG later purchased Novoe Russkoe Slovo (The New Russian Word, the oldest Russian newspaper in the US), the Narodnaia Volna radio station, the CN-Stolichnye Novosti political weekly and the Stolichka daily newspaper. Rabinovich co-owned Jewish News One from 2011 until its closure in 2014.


  1. ^ "4 parties polling well for July 21 parliament election" (in Ukrainian). 4 June 2019. Retrieved 4 June 2019.
  2. ^ Вадим Рабінович: нардеп із двома судимостями. Політека (in Ukrainian). 30 August 2017. Retrieved 12 June 2018.
  3. ^ Журналисты вспомнили темные пятна из жизни Вадима Рабиновича (in Russian). Retrieved 12 June 2018.
  4. ^ "Отсидка, коррупция и поставка оружия террористам". 3 August 2017.
  5. ^ a b "'I am the Obama of Ukraine,' says Jewish presidential hopeful". The Times of Israel.
  6. ^ "Israeli News | The Jerusalem Post". Archived from the original on 26 May 2014.
  7. ^ a b c d Rabinovich rallies his supporters, Kyiv Post (8 April 1999)[dead link]
  8. ^ "Hurva Synagogue restoration nears completion". Archived from the original on 3 April 2008. Retrieved 11 September 2016., Jerusalem Post, 28 March 2008.
  9. ^ From ruin to reconstruction, the Hurva Synagogue is completed – again, Jewish Journal, 9 March 2010.
  10. ^ Naming of Old City plaza after oligarch stirs debate, Jerusalem Post, 1 June 2012. Archived 17 August 2012 at the Wayback Machine
  11. ^ Why was Old City square named after Ukrainian oligarch, 500 years before his time?, The Time of Israel, 1 May 2012
  12. ^ a b "Рабинович Вадим" [Rabinovich Vadim]. Украина.ру ( (in Russian). Archived from the original on 17 June 2002. Retrieved 29 June 2021.
  13. ^ a b "ХТО КОМУ РАБІНОВИЧ". 7 February 2018.
  14. ^ "Журналист опубликовал справку об израильском гражданстве депутата Рабиновича". 13 November 2017.
  15. ^ "Ukrainian Jewish leader Rabinovich survives blast". The Times of Israel.
  16. ^ a b "President of All-Ukrainian Jewish Congress Rabynovych to register as presidential candidate".
  17. ^ "Poroshenko wins presidential election with 54.7% of vote - CEC". Radio Ukraine International. 29 May 2014. Archived from the original on 29 May 2014. Retrieved 29 May 2014.
    (in Russian) Results election of Ukrainian president, Телеграф (29 May 2014)
  18. ^ Poroshenko Bloc to have greatest number of seats in parliament, Ukrinform (8 November 2014)
    People's Front 0.33% ahead of Poroshenko Bloc with all ballots counted in Ukraine elections - CEC, Interfax-Ukraine (8 November 2014)
    Poroshenko Bloc to get 132 seats in parliament - CEC, Interfax-Ukraine (8 November 2014)
  19. ^ (in Ukrainian) Full electoral list of Opposition Bloc, Ukrayinska Pravda (19 September 2014)
  20. ^ "From the Opposition bloc goes Rabinovich – Ukrop News 24". Archived from the original on 9 November 2016.
  21. ^ "Party 'the Center' received a new name". Retrieved 27 November 2017.
  22. ^ For Life Party's leader Rabinovich not to run for president of Ukraine, Interfax-Ukraine (15 November 2018)
  23. ^ "Ukraine lists Jewish lawmaker and community leader as 'war traitor'". The Jerusalem Post. on Feb. 14 [he] wrote on Facebook that the war had begun “and the West Ukraine began it.”
  24. ^ Liphshiz, Cnaan (21 April 2022). "Ukraine adds local Jewish leader to list of pro-Russian 'traitors'". The Times of Israel.
  25. ^ Liphshiz, Cnaan (20 April 2022). "Ukrainian Jewish leader added to list of pro-Russia 'traitors'". J. The Jewish News of Northern California.
  26. ^ a b c d (in Ukrainian) FOR LIFE Who is Vadim Rabinovich to whom? by Ukrayinska Pravda/Civil movement "Chesno" (2017)
  27. ^ "Рабинович Вадим".


  1. ^ Rabinovich is close to the Israeli Leonid Wolf (Russian: Леонид Вульф).[12]

External links[edit]