Kremlin accuses US of trying to justify ‘expropriation’ — RT Russia and the former Soviet Union

White House plan to ‘streamline’ seizure of Russian private assets goes against all legal norms, Moscow says

Washington’s plan to extend its authority to “seize and confiscate” strengths of Russia “oligarchs” providing financial assistance to Kyiv is nothing else “expropriation” which flouts the very right to private property, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov told reporters on Friday.

“This is a very dangerous precedent” Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman said, adding that such an action would be a “serious violation of any legal norm”.

Such an approach can only lead “deep misunderstanding and rejection” Peskov said, adding that the very fact that the US administration and Congress are discussing something like this shows “how shaky all universally accepted foundations have become” in the field of private property rights, as well as in economics and politics.

It is nothing more than a simple expropriation of private property which [the US] seeks to justify falsely.

His comments came a day after the White House presented a set of “complete proposals” aimed at supposedly detaining Russian “oligarchs” and the elites responsible for what the US sees as the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Proposals include “establish a streamlined administrative authority to seize and confiscate the oligarch’s assets”, among other measures. Authority, including representatives of the Treasury and Justice Departments, should be able to confiscate U.S. assets from sanctioned Russian individuals if those assets “is related to specified illegal behavior.” The decision would then be reviewable in federal court.

The proceeds of confiscated property should then be transferred to Ukraine for “to repair the damage of Russian aggression”, says the document. Earlier, The New York Times reported that the House passed soft law urging the Biden administration to sell off Russia’s frozen luxury assets. “oligarchs” and use the funds to provide additional military and humanitarian aid to Ukraine.

According to the newspaper, an earlier version of the bill, backed by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, among others, included a provision allowing Biden to sell seized Russian assets and use the resulting funds as aid. to Ukraine.

The bill has met with resistance from the House Foreign Affairs Committee and lawyers from the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), who have raised concerns about “the complete absence of any due process protection” in the bill, which would “a US court strikes down both the sanctions law and the sanctions themselves”, reported the NYT, citing Christopher Anders, the director of federal policy at the ACLU.

Biden urged to confiscate Russian assets

As a result, lawmakers turned the bill into a non-binding resolution that still passed by a 417-8 vote in the House.

Washington and its allies had earlier imposed a series of unprecedented sanctions against Moscow for its military operation in Ukraine. The sanctions mainly targeted the Russian financial and banking sectors as well as the aeronautical and space industries. Western nations have also seized assets belonging to Russian businessmen seen as close to the Kremlin.

Russia attacked its neighboring state in late February, following Ukraine’s failure to implement the terms of the Minsk agreements, first signed in 2014, and Moscow’s eventual recognition of the republics of Donetsk and Lugansk Donbass. The protocols negotiated by Germany and France were designed to give breakaway regions a special status within the Ukrainian state.

The Kremlin has since demanded that Ukraine officially declare itself a neutral country that will never join the US-led NATO military bloc. kyiv insists the Russian offensive was unprovoked and has denied claims it planned to retake the two republics by force.

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