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Putin signs decree allowing authorities to seize US property in Russia

Russian President Vladimir Putin

President Vladimir Putin has signed a decree which allows authorities to seize American property in the Russia Federation as compensation for any seizure of Russian assets in the United States.

The decree signed on Thursday established a special procedure for compensating damage caused to Russia and its central bank by the US government or judicial decisions through seizing Russian assets in the US.

According to Russia’s leading news agency TASS, movable and immovable property of the US, American companies and citizens in Russia, as well as securities owned by them, and other property rights of the US and Americans in the Russia Federation will be subject to seizure.

In case the application is accepted, the court will send the request to Russia’s state commission on monitoring foreign investment. The commission then will make a list of American property that, “taking into account the principle of proportionality, can be used” to compensate for damage from the seizure of Russian assets in the US.

“The decision [of the court] on establishing the fact of an unjustified deprivation of the Russian copyright holder of rights to property and on compensation for damages provides for the termination of rights of the United States or a US citizen to property included in the list, and the subsequent transfer of these rights to the Russian copyright holder to compensate for the damage,” the decree said.

Since the onset of the current war between Russia and Ukraine, the US and its European allies have financially and militarily supported Kiev despite the Kremlin’s repeated warning that such firm support of the ex-Soviet republic will only prolong the war.

The US and its allies have also unleashed waves of harsh sanctions against Russia, which has been threatening to confiscate the Russia-based assets of countries it considers to be “hostile.”

“The government of the Russian Federation, within a four-month period, ensures the introduction of changes to the legislation of the Russian Federation aimed at implementing this decree,” the document further said.

Putin’s decree came almost a month after US President Joe Biden signed into law a whopping military aid to Ukraine. The critical aid package also included provisions for Washington to sell confiscated Russian assets in the US and hand the proceeds to Kiev for its post-war reconstruction efforts.

Shortly after the onset of the war, the US and its European allies seized or blocked some $300 billion of Russian financial assets.

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