Sergei Borisovich Ivanov (Russian: Серге́й Бори́сович
Ивано́в, IPA: [sʲɪrˈɡʲej bɐˈrʲisəvʲɪtɕ
ɪvɐˈnof]; born 31 January 1953) is a Russian senior official and
politician who is the
Special Representative of the President of the
Russian Federation on the Issues of Environmental Activities,
Environment and Transport since 12 August 2016.
Minister of Defense of
Russia from March 2001 to February
Deputy Prime Minister from November 2005 to February 2007, and
Deputy Prime Minister from February 2007 to May 2008. After
the election of
Dmitry Medvedev as President of Russia, Ivanov was
Deputy Prime Minister in Vladimir Putin's second
government. From December 2011 to August 2016, Ivanov was the Chief of
Staff of the Presidential Executive Office.
Before joining the federal administration in Moscow, Ivanov, a fluent
speaker of English, served from the late 1970s in Europe and in Africa
as a specialist in law and foreign languages. As an employee of the
KGB in the
Soviet Union era, Ivanov became a friend of his colleague
Vladimir Putin, who appointed him as his Deputy in the late 1990s.
1 Youth, education, and early career
2 Career in Moscow
2.1 Head of the Security Council
2.2 Minister of Defense
2.3 Deputy Prime Minister
2.4 2008 presidential election
2.5 Chief of Staff
5 External links
Youth, education, and early career
Ivanov was born on 31 January 1953 in Leningrad. In 1975, he graduated
from the English translation branch of the Department of
Leningrad State University, where he majored in English and Swedish.
In the late 1970s Ivanov began a two decades career on the staff of
the external intelligence service. In 1976 he completed postgraduate
studies in counterintelligence, graduating from Higher Courses of the
KGB in Minsk.
Upon graduating in 1976, Ivanov was sent to serve for the Leningrad
and Leningrad Oblast
KGB Directorate, where he became a friend of
Vladimir Putin, then a colleague of his.
In the 1980s, Ivanov served as the
Second Secretary at the Soviet
Embassy in Helsinki, working directly under the
KGB resident Felix
Career in Moscow
In August 1998,
Vladimir Putin became head of the FSB, and appointed
Ivanov his deputy. As deputy director of the Federal Security Service,
Ivanov solidified his reputation in Moscow as a competent analyst in
matters of domestic and external security.
Head of the Security Council
On 15 November 1999, Ivanov was appointed secretary of the Security
Council of Russia, an advisory body charged with formulating
presidential directives on national security, by Boris Yeltsin. In
that position, Ivanov replaced Putin as Yeltsin's national security
adviser upon Putin's promotion to the premiership.
As secretary, Ivanov was responsible for coordinating the daily work
of the council, led by the president. But Ivanov's role as secretary
was initially unclear to media observers. At the time of his
appointment, the Security Council was a relatively new institution.
(The council was set up by Yeltsin's tutelage in 1991–1992).
Between 1992 and Ivanov's appointment in 1999, Yeltsin used the
council as political expediency had dictated, but had not allowed it
to emerge as a relatively strong and autonomous institution.
Ivanov's predecessors in that post, including Putin, according to
Western analysts, were either the second most powerful political
Russia or the just another functionary lacking close access
to the center of state power, depending on their relationship with
Minister of Defense
Ivanov was named by Vladimir Putin, who had succeeded Yeltsin as
President on 31 December 1999, as Russia's
Minister of Defense in
March 2001. That month Ivanov stepped down as secretary of the
Defense, but remained a member. Ivanov had resigned from military
service around a year earlier, and was a civilian while serving as
secretary of the Security Council. Ivanov therefore became Russia's
first civilian Defense minister. Putin called the personnel changes
in Russia's security structures coinciding with Ivanov's appointment
as Defense minister "a step toward demilitarizing public life." Putin
also stressed Ivanov's responsibility for overseeing military reform
as Defense minister.
Unsurprisingly to specialists on Russia, Ivanov became bogged down in
the sheer difficulty of his duties as Deputy Prime Minister. But
despite bureaucratic inertia and corruption in the military, Ivanov
did preside over some changes the form of a shift towards a more
professional army. Although Ivanov was not successful in abandoning
the draft, he did downsize it.
As Defense Minister, Ivanov worked with U.S. Secretary of Defense
Donald Rumsfeld to expand Russian-U.S. cooperation against
international terrorist threats to both states.
On May 2001, Ivanov was elected chairman of the Council of
Commonwealth of Independent States
Commonwealth of Independent States Defense Ministers.
In October 2003,
Sergei Ivanov claimed that
Russia did not rule out a
pre-emptive military strike anywhere in the world if the national
interest demands it.
In 2004, Sergei Ivanov, then acting Defense Minister, pledged state
support to the suspects in Chechen leader Zelimkhan Yandarbiyev's
assassination detained in
Qatar and declared that their imprisonment
was illegal. Later Qatari prosecutors concluded that the suspects
had received the order to eliminate Zelimkhan Yandarbiev from Sergei
In January 2006, Ivanov received criticism for his downplaying
response to the public outcry over a particularly brutal hazing
incident at a military base in the Urals, which involved Andrey
Sychyov as a victim, whose legs and genitals were amputated due to the
vicious beatings and abuse.
From time to time Ivanov has disconcerted Western audiences with the
bluntness of his remarks on international military and political
issues, though his political orientation is moderate and generally
liberal on economic issues. In a series of public comments on the
2003–2004 elections, for instance, he unequivocally stated his
opposition to rolling back the Western-style economic reforms and
privatizations of the 1990s.
On 15 December 2006, in Moscow,
Sergei Ivanov said to foreign
correspondents about Alexander Litvinenko, poisoned in London in
November, which made headlines in the West: "For us, Litvinenko was
nothing. We didn't care what he said and what he wrote on his
Deputy Prime Minister
In November 2005, Ivanov was appointed to the post of Deputy Prime
Minister in Mikhail Fradkov's Second Cabinet, with added
responsibility for the Manufacturing industry and arms exports. On 15
February 2007, Putin elevated Ivanov to the post of First Deputy Prime
Minister and relieved him of his duties as Defense Minister; he
was appointed as First
Deputy Prime Minister with responsibility over
defense industry, aerospace industry, nanotechnology and transport. In
June 2007 Ivanov was appointed chairman of the Government Council for
2008 presidential election
Because of his popularity with voters, Putin's endorsement was
expected to help his preferred candidate, according to opinion polls
and Russian political analysts. This speculation was
intensified in November 2005 by Ivanov's promotion to the rank of
Deputy Prime Minister. The speculation was further intensified in
February 2007 by Ivanov's promotion to the post of First Deputy Prime
Minister, but they ceased after his colleague
Dmitry Medvedev was
nominated to run for presidency with Putin's backing. Ivanov expressed
his support for Medvedev's candidacy as well.
Russian opinion polls suggested that Ivanov enjoys wide name
recognition among the Russian public with relatively strong approval
Ivanov's career, in terms of his background and rise through Russia's
state structures, has often been compared to Putin's, fueling
speculation that Ivanov might run for president in 2008. Three months
younger than Putin, Ivanov had been a student contemporary of Putin's
in their hometown of Leningrad where both completed competitive
specialized secondary education programs (Putin in chemistry, Ivanov
in English language) before attending Leningrad State University.
Both completed postgraduate studies in counterintelligence; and both
joined the foreign intelligence service shortly afterward. However,
according to Ivanov's recollections, he did not become acquainted with
Putin during their years as students, but rather when both were
assigned to work in the same foreign intelligence division in
Chief of Staff
In December 2011, Ivanov was appointed Chief of Staff of the
Presidential Administration of Russia. He was noted for his
hawkish views during the
Ukrainian crisis and towards the West and his
major role in lobbying for the Russian military intervention in the
Syrian Civil War.
On 12 August 2016, Ivanov was fired from his Chief of Staff position
by Putin and replaced by Anton Vaino. Ivanov then became a special
envoy for transportation and the environment. Putin's firing of Ivanov
was part of a series of replacements of Putin's older peers with young
loyalists. The Steele Dossier (Report 2016/111) claims that his
encouragement of meddling in the US 2016 Presidential elections, which
provoked unanticipated blowback against the Kremlin, was the catalyst
for his firing.
On March 20, 2014, the
Office of Foreign Assets Control
Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC)
announced that Ivanov and 19 others had been added to the Specially
Designated Nationals List (SDN).
Ivanov is fluent in English and Swedish as well as speaking Norwegian,
and some French. His hobbies include fishing, and reading detective
novels in the original English.
Sergei Ivanov supports CSKA Moscow, he can often be seen at PFC CSKA
and PBC CSKA matches.
He married in 1976 and has two children.
On 20 May 2005, a
Volkswagen driven by Ivanov's eldest son, Alexander
(1977–2014), struck and killed a 68-year-old woman, Svetlana
Beridze, on a zebra crossing. Charges against him were, however,
dropped. Alexander Ivanov died on 3 November 2014; he drowned in
the sea in United Arab Emirates.
^ "Putin dismisses powerful chief of staff". News24. 2016-08-12.
^ a b Иванов, Сергей — Руководитель
администрации президента России. Lenta.ru
^ Biography Archived February 20, 2007, at the Wayback Machine. by
Vladimir Pribylovsky (in Russian).
Russia Profile – Who's Who? Archived May 11, 2006, at the Wayback
^ Heikki Hellman: Who remembers 2nd Secretary Ivanov?. hs.fi 3 April
2007 (archived 2007-06-22)
^ Aleksei Makarkin, Valeria Sycheva: Putin's Electoral Staff Opens
Inside Ministry of Defense. Segodnya, p. 2 Russian Press Digest, 16
^ a b c "ISCIP - Perspective". Retrieved 4 April 2016.
^ a b Finn, Peter. "Russian Leader Expands Powers of a Possible
Successor". The Washington Post.
^ a b c d e "The
Russia Index 2006–50 Key Players in Business and
Politics" (PDF). p. 19. Archived from the original (PDF) on 19
^ "The Avalon Project : Documents in Law, History and Diplomacy".
Archived from the original on 1 April 2016. Retrieved 4 April
Russia bares its military teeth, BBC News, 2 October 2003.
Sergei Ivanov has promised to strive for discharge of the Russian
prisoners in Qatar. Lenta.ru, 3 March 2004 (in Russian).
Sergei Ivanov Tied to the Case of the Russians in
Qatar by Mikhail
Zygar. Kommersant, 13 April 2004.
^ Russian Soldier Brutally Hazed Archived May 29, 2007, at the Wayback
Machine. CBS News
^ "Violent Bullying of Russian Conscripts Exposed". Retrieved 4 April
^ Hazing Trial Bares Dark Side of Russia's Military, The New York
Times, 11 August 2006
^ Poisoned Spy’s Wife Says He Feared Kremlin’s Long Reach by Alan
Cowell, The New York Times, 17 December 2006.
Sergei Ivanov told about Litvinenko’s "bad reputation", Lenta.ru, 16
December 2006 (in Russian).
^ "Putin Promotes
Sergei Ivanov to First Deputy Premier (Update3)".
Bloomberg. 15 February 2007.
^ Ivanov had prior knowledge of Medvedev’s nomination Archived May
3, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.
^ Ivanov Leads, Zubkov Negligible in
Russia Archived 2007-10-08 at the
^ Levada Center poll: 2008 elections Archived 2007-11-30 at the
Wayback Machine. (in Russian)
^ a b c "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2006-05-11.
^ Andrew E. Kramer (December 28, 2011). "Political Promotions in
Russia Appear to Belie President's Promise of Reform". The New York
Times. Retrieved December 30, 2011.
^ "The urge to purge? Vladimir Putin's powerful right-hand man steps
down". The Economist. 12 August 2016. Retrieved 14 August 2016.
^ Macfarquhar, Neil (12 August 2016). "Putin Dismisses Sergei Ivanov,
a Longtime Ally, as Chief of Staff". The New York Times.
^ "Treasury Sanctions Russian Officials, Members Of The Russian
Leadership's Inner Circle, And An Entity For Involvement In The
Situation In Ukraine". US Department of the treasury.
^ "Executive Order - Blocking Property of Additional Persons
Contributing to the Situation in Ukraine". The White House - Office of
the Press Secretary.
^ "Ukraine-related Designations". Retrieved 4 April 2016.
^ "Specially Designated Nationals List (SDN)". Retrieved 4 April
^ Shuklin, Peter (March 21, 2014). "Putin's inner circle: who got in a
new list of US sanctions". liga.net. Archived from the original on
February 7, 2015. Retrieved February 20, 2016.
^ President of The United States (March 19, 2016). "Ukraine EO13661"
(PDF). Federal Register. Retrieved February 20, 2016.
^ Russian motorists enraged by elite's flashing blue lights by Adrian
Blomfield, The Daily Telegraph, 13 February 2006.
, The St. Petersburg Times, 25 November 2005.[dead link]
Sergei Ivanov. Biography by
Vladimir Pribylovsky (in Russian).
Archived February 20, 2007, at the Wayback Machine.
^ Сын Сергея Иванова погиб в ОАЭ
^ "Son Of Putin's Chief Of Staff Dies At 37".
RadioFreeEurope/RadioLiberty. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Sergei Ivanov.
Interview with Sergei Ivanov, in
Sergei Ivanov Biography at spb.ru
"Russian Defense Minister Arrives In Kyrgyzstan"
Secretary of the Security Council
Minister of Defense
Deputy Prime Minister of Russia
Served alongside: Dmitry Medvedev
Chief of Staff of the Presidential Administration
ISNI: 0000 0001 1085 9490