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Chimaev’s manager refutes rumor that UFC fighter’s passport was seized in Russia

Brazilian outlet Combate claimed that Chimaev had his passport seized during a recent trip to Russia.

UFC 279: Chimaev v Holland Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC

Khamzat Chimaev’s manager has refuted reports that the UFC fighter had his Russian passport seized during a recent trip to his native country.

The report, which was published by Brazilian outlet Combate, claimed that Chimaev had his passport “confiscated” in St. Petersburg, where he was transiting before catching a second flight to Chechnya. Though it remains unclear why Chimaev’s passport may have been seized, Combate noted that Russia “has been recruiting soldiers for the war in Ukraine.”

Combate also claimed that Chimaev, who currently resides in Sweden, is attempting to solicit the help of the Swedish government in order to secure his exit.

However, according to ESPN’s Brett Okamoto, Chimaev’s manager Majdi Shammas denied the reports that the fighter was stuck in Russia. Shammas added that his fighter is not facing any travel restrictions.

Chimaev’s social media accounts are filled with pictures from his recent trip to Chechnya. The UFC fighter visited Ramzan Kadyrov, the strongman leader of Chechnya accused of well-documented human rights abuses, including forced disappearances, extrajudicial killings, and state-sponsored purges of LGBTQ+ peoples. He also participated in training sessions with the dictator’s teenage sons, and visited the Akhmat MMA fight club, an entity facing U.S. Treasury sanctions.