West gets alienated over confiscating Russian assets


(MENAFN) A growing divide among Western allies has emerged as they wrestle with the contentious issue of confiscating approximately USD300 billion in frozen Russian assets to aid Ukraine, Bloomberg reported on Wednesday. The immobilized funds, frozen by the West since the onset of the Ukraine conflict, have become a focal point of disagreement, with the United States and United Kingdom advocating for outright seizure to fund the Ukrainian government. While United States Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and United Kingdom Prime Minister Rishi Sunak assert the legal and moral grounds for confiscation, the European Union (EU) is cautioning against potential legal and financial repercussions.

The deepening rift among G7 countries was publicly highlighted by French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, who challenged Yellen's assertion that tapping into the Russian funds would be legal. Speaking on the sidelines of a G20 finance ministers' meeting in Sao Paulo, Le Maire emphasized the need for a stronger legal basis before considering asset seizures. The European Union is exploring alternative approaches, with German Finance Minister Christian Lindner suggesting a focus on using proceeds, such as interest earned from the frozen assets, in a legally secure manner to support Ukraine.

This internal discord among Western allies adds complexity to their response to the Ukraine conflict, reflecting differing perspectives on the legal, moral, and financial implications of seizing Russian assets. As the debate intensifies, finding a unified approach remains elusive, underscoring the challenges of navigating geopolitical tensions within the G7 alliance.

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