Mon. Jul 15th, 2024

Brussels, 30 November 2022

Statement by President von der Leyen on Russian accountability and the use of Russian frozen assets

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has brought death, devastation and unspeakable suffering. We all remember the horrors of Bucha.

First, Russia must pay for its horrific crimes, including for its crime of aggression against a sovereign state. This is why, while continuing to support the International Criminal Court, we are proposing to set up a specialised court, backed by the United Nations, to investigate and prosecute Russia’s crime of aggression. We are ready to start working with the international community to get the broadest international support possible for this specialised court.

Secondly, Russia must also pay financially for the devastation that it caused. The damage suffered by Ukraine is estimated at 600 billion euros. Russia and its oligarchs have to compensate Ukraine for the damage and cover the costs for rebuilding the country. And we have the means to make Russia pay. We have blocked 300 billion euros of the Russian Central Bank reserves and we have frozen 19 billion euros of Russian oligarchs’ money.

In the short term, we could create, with our partners, a structure to manage these funds and invest them. We would then use the proceeds for Ukraine. And once the sanctions are lifted, these funds should be used so that Russia pays full compensation for the damages caused to Ukraine.

We will work on an international agreement with our partners to make this possible. And together, we can find legal ways to get to it.

Russia’s horrific crimes will not go unpunished.

Source – EU Commission

 

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