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14 Aug, 2023 18:02

Media mogul Murdoch dating retired Russian scientist – media

Fox News founder is off the coast of Greece with Roman Abramovich’s ex-mother-in-law, according to the Daily Mail
Media mogul Murdoch dating retired Russian scientist – media

Rupert Murdoch is romancing Elena Zhukova, a retired Russian-American scientist, the Daily Mail reported on Monday. The two are currently cruising the Mediterranean with two of Murdoch’s daughters from a prior marriage, on a yacht once owned by the legendary Greek magnate Aristotle Onassis.

Zhukova, 66, is a retired molecular biologist and an authority on diabetes. She moved to the US in 1991, after divorcing her first husband. She was reportedly introduced to Murdoch, 92, by her daughter Dasha – a socialite formerly married to Russian tycoon Roman Abramovich, and a friend of Murdoch’s third wife Wendi Deng.

“They met through Wendi and Dasha,” an unnamed source told the Mail.

Dasha, who has both Russian and American citizenship, was married to Abramovich between 2008 and 2018. She received a Manhattan mansion as part of the divorce. In 2019, she married the Greek shipping heir Stavros Niarchos II. 

92-year-old Australian media mogul Murdoch has been married four times and has six children. He most recently divorced Deng in 2013. Earlier this year, Murdoch called off his engagement to Ann Lesley Smith, allegedly due to her Christianity and admiration for TV host Tucker Carlson. Fox fired Carlson in April, abruptly and without explanation, demolishing its ratings in the process.

In addition to Fox News, which he founded in 1996, Murdoch’s media empire consists of Sky News, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Post, The Sun, The Times, as well as the publishing house Harper Collins.

Murdoch and Zhukova are said to be in “early stages of romance.” Grace and Chloe, Murdoch’s daughters by Deng, have reportedly joined them aboard the luxury yacht Christina O, spotted in the Ionian Sea off the coast of Corfu.

The former Canadian frigate was bought by the Greek shipping tycoon Onassis after the Second World War and named after his daughter. It was converted into a luxury yacht as a gesture of one-upmanship towards rival Greek magnate Stavros Niarchos. 

The boat hosted the wedding reception for actress Grace Kelly and Prince Rainier of Monaco in 1956, and was redecorated by Onassis’ second wife, Jacqueline Kennedy, the widow of the US president assassinated in 1963. It is said to cost $767,000 a week to rent.