EU has frozen 13.8 billion euros of Russian assets over Ukraine war, official says


BRUSSELS (Reuters) – The European Union has to date frozen 13.8 billion euros ($13.83 billion) value of assets held by Russian oligarchs, different people and entities sanctioned for Moscow’s battle in opposition to Ukraine, the bloc’s high justice official mentioned on Tuesday.

The official mentioned the overwhelming majority of that comes from 5 of the EU’s 27 member states solely, calling on others to step up. The bloc at the moment has 98 entities and almost 1,160 people blacklisted for Russia’s position in Ukraine.

“For the second, we have now frozen funds coming from oligarchs and different entities value 13.8 billion euros, it is fairly large,” EU Justice Commissioner Didier Reynders mentioned on Tuesday.

“But a really giant half, greater than 12 billion comes from 5 member states so we have to proceed to persuade others to do the identical,” he instructed reporters on arriving to a gathering of the nationwide justice ministers within the Czech capital Prague.

He didn’t establish the 5 international locations.

He mentioned he anticipated a closing political settlement after the summer season on a brand new authorized device to make breaching or making an attempt to bypass sanctions a legal offence all over the place within the EU, which isn’t the case at the moment.

The coverage, meant to curb circumventing restrictions by transferring assets to members of the family who had not been sanctioned, may then take impact within the autumn.

“If it is the case, the cash will return to a fund for Ukrainian folks, to offer again the cash to the Ukrainian folks after the confiscation of assets,” he mentioned.

Reynders and the ministers additionally mentioned cooperating with Eurojust, the bloc’s company for legal justice, on increase proof of alleged battle crimes in Ukraine, which had been attacked by Russia from land, sea and air final February.

He mentioned Eurojust would retailer all of the proof and will cooperate intently with the bloc’s member international locations, 14 of which have their very own nationwide investigations working into the battle.

“The most necessary is to have an excellent coordination, to not duplicate the totally different conditions, and to gather all of the proof in the identical place,” mentioned Reynders.

($1 = 0.9979 euros)

(Reporting by Gabriela Baczynska; Editing by Alison Williams)

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