Russia warns West against ‘plundering’ its frozen assets for Ukraine ‘reparations’

Russia warns the West against attempts to seize its frozen international reserves to be used as compensation for damage and loss in Ukraine, promising to do “everything possible” to stop the “plundering” of its assets.

The West froze around half – or more than $300 billion – of Russia’s international reserves after Moscow launched a military operation in Ukraine in late February.

The United Nations General Assembly approved a resolution on Monday, declaring that the Kremlin must make reparations to Ukraine for damage inflicted on the nation.

The UN resolution, supported by 94 of the assembly’s 193 members with 14 votes against, said Russia “must bear the legal consequences of all of its internationally wrongful acts, including making reparation for the injury, including any damage, caused by such acts.”

President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov said on Tuesday that Moscow “will do everything possible” to resist Western attempts to “plunder” its reserves.

He accused the West of “racketeering” and of “violating all the foundations and rules of private property and international law.”

Peskov said that the moves in the United Nations were an attempt to use the global forum to “formalize robbery.”

Meanwhile, leaders of the Group of 20 major economies (G20) appeared ready on Tuesday to publish a declaration condemning the war in Ukraine.

The draft statement seen Tuesday by The Associated Press ‘deplores in the strongest terms the aggression by the Russian Federation and ‘demands its complete and unconditional withdrawal from the territory of Ukraine.’

At the G20 summit, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy joined his American counterpart Joe Biden in trying to persuade the G20 to further isolate Russia diplomatically and economically.

The G20 draft statement, however, said there were different views on the situation and sanctions against Russia.

Since February, the US and its European allies have imposed unprecedented waves of economic sanctions against Moscow while supplying large consignments of heavy weaponry to Kiev. Moscow has warned that the steady flow of arms into Ukraine will only prolong the war.

Inflation and slowing economies are weighing on countries that have imposed the penalties, while higher costs for energy and food have destabilized business activity around the world.

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