The US will “be hit like a boomerang” by Russia following the confirmation that seized finances from a Moscow businessman would be sent to Ukraine.
Russia’s drawn-out attempt at invading and taking control of Ukraine is continuing, but varying reports say with little success.
The screw is continuing to be turned on Russia, led by its president Vladimir Putin, and a new move by the US to send assets claimed from Russians has infuriated the Kremlin.
The US opted to shift the confiscated assets of Konstantin Malofeyev – chairman of the media group Tsargrad – to Ukraine, in a move that was condemned by Russia.
Confirmation of the transaction came from attorney-general Merrick Garland, who said following his decision: “While this represents the United States’ first transfer of forfeited Russian funds for the rebuilding of Ukraine, it will not be the last.”
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In response to the plot, Russia claimed it was illegal to carry out such an act, and promised it would backfire on Washington.
Dmitry Peskov, a Kremlin spokesman, claimed the US “stole” the money from Russia, warning that decisions like those would “hit like a boomerang”.
He continued: “This undermines the confidence of investors and owners of assets that are somehow connected with America, and this certainly cannot remain without consequences for the United States.”
The Russian added that the actions of Washington deserved a response, though stopped short of outlining what exactly that could be.
Peskov’s warning comes after Malofeyev described the US as “Biden’s crime group”, and that he had been “defrauded” of his cash.
It is expected that next week members of the G7 will agree that Russia “pays for the damage it has caused” in response to finances being lost during the brutal conflict.
According to a statement seen by the Financial Times, the leaders will likely agree to “immobilise” Moscow’s sovereign assets “consistent with our respective legal systems”.
This will be until a resolution that supports “Ukraine’s sovereignty and integrity” is found.
Brussels and the European Commission have been looking to enforce new rules that protects sanctions evasion, and any such act would be treated as a crime across the EU.
A report from the Commission said billions of dollars had been attributed to sanctions of individuals and companies so far in the bloc.
More recently Colonel General Oleksandr Syrskyi, Commander of the Ukrainian Ground Forces, said Russia had retreated up to 2km near Bakhmut – a key location in the war.
Writing on Telegram, he added: “In some areas of the frontline, the enemy could not withstand the onslaught of Ukrainian defenders and retreated to a distance of up to 2 kilometres.”