WASHINGTON, Jan. 25 (UPI) -- John McCain's campaign manager reportedly helped arrange the introduction of the Arizona senator to politically connected Russian businessman Oleg Deripaska.
The Washington Post Friday said the meeting took place in 2006 at a dinner party in Switzerland and was followed up by a similar encounter in Montenegro seven months later.
The Post said there was no evidence that McCain, a Republican presidential hopeful, and Deripaska had any further contact, but the newspaper contended the meeting illustrated the obstacles McCain faces in campaigning as a Washington "outsider" despite his long Senate career.
The Switzerland meeting was social in nature and took place in conjunction at the same time as the World Economic Summit in Davos, the Post said. It was arranged by Rick Davis, who was a lobbyist for a firm representing Deripaksa's aluminum company.
The Post said Deripaska is billionaire several times over and is a close ally of Russian President Vladimir Putin.