Estonia Backs Using Frozen Russian Assets To Help Ukraine

(MENAFN- IANS) Riga, May 13 (IANS/DPA) Estonian Prime Minister Kaja Kallas has welcomed EU plans for transferring interest accrued on frozen Russian financial assets to Ukraine.

"This will mean real funds for Ukraine to buy weapons," Kallas said following a meeting of the prime ministers of the three Baltic republics in Vilnius.

"But we can't stop there. We must find a way to use Russian frozen assets as well," Kallas said. Russia had caused damage to Ukraine "and they should pay for it," Kallas added.

She indicated that Estonia planned to take the lead in transferring to Ukraine the Russian assets frozen in the country as part of sanctions on Russian in response to its February 2022 invasion.

Draft legislation had passed a second reading in the Estonian parliament and should be passed before the summer recess, she said.

Attempts had been made to make it as legally watertight as possible, while also acting within the principles of the law.

"We have shared our draft law with our Baltic colleagues and other colleagues outside," Kallas said. She expressed the expectation that other EU countries would follow the Estonian lead.

Many EU member states have expressed reservations about using the seized assets, both on legal grounds and for fear of Russian retaliation.



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