Britain may become first country to confiscate Russian assets

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According to British media, the UK has tabled legislation that would allow for the detention and liquidation of confiscated frozen Russian assets, setting a precedent among Western countries.

The new law will allow the British government to maintain sanctions against Ukraine until restitution is paid, paving the route for confiscated Russian funds to be returned to Kiev.

According to media sources, the law will allow for the seizure of frozen assets belonging to the Russian state and individuals, making the UK the first European country to do so.

“Through our new measures today, we’re strengthening the UK’s sanctions approach, reaffirming that the UK is prepared to use sanctions to ensure Russia pays to repair the country,” British Foreign Minister James Cleverly said.

Despite rising pressure from the US and the EU, several Western governments, including Switzerland, have so far resisted from seizing Russian funds. There is concern that it would set a precedent for the seizure of Western assets kept abroad, undermining investor trust in the European financial system.

Meanwhile, Brussels and its allies have been investigating methods of seizing Russian assets, with the Council of Europe building a computerized register of damage in Ukraine – a move characterized as the first step toward establishing a “international compensation mechanism.”