French MPs propose using frozen Russian assets for Ukraine’s reconstruction

French MPs propose using frozen Russian assets for Ukraines reconstruction

Emmanuel Macron receives Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky this Friday February 16 in Paris. On the agenda of the discussions, the signing of a bilateral security agreement. European aid to Ukraine will also be discussed. And on this subject, a proposed resolution has just been tabled by French parliamentarians. Their idea: use Russian assets frozen in Europe to finance aid to Ukraine.

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After the start of the war in Ukraine, the European Union and the G7 countries sanctioned Moscow in freezing assets of the Russian central bank on their territory: 300 billion euros, of which 200 billion are housed in European accounts.

Thursday February 15, two French deputies proposed confiscating them for the benefit of the reconstruction of Ukraine. A transpartisan text submitted by Renaissance, the presidential party, and the Ecologists, including the deputy Julien Bayou, questioned by Aurélien Devernoix, from the political service. “ With Benjamin Haddad, who is the president of the France-Ukraine friendship group, of which I am a member, we are asking France to weigh in at the European level to confiscate Russian assets which are currently frozen at the European level, explains the MP. There are 300 billion euros which, for the most part, are in Belgium, which are assets of the Russian Central Bank which have been frozen for almost two years. We do nothing about it and we propose to allocate them to support Ukraine. This is five times the sums that were released at European level during the last aid package. »

The MP hopes that this decision will be on the agenda of discussions between the two presidents, because we “ talks about the security of Ukraine and we must understand that it is also the security of Europe which is at stake “. “ It is those responsible for this unjustifiable war who must take responsibility for reconstruction. », specifies the transpartisan resolution which calls for modifying French law, because for the moment, it prohibits the seizure of the assets of a foreign state.

A measure also requested in the United Kingdom and across the Atlantic

This money which is frozen, the deputies want either to use it directly, or for it to serve as guarantee for a European or Ukrainian loan to support the war effort. And the debate is not just French. Last month, for example, several advisers to the American president revealed “ to work » permanent confiscation of assets.

It is the same speech on the British side where the Minister of Foreign Affairs insists on the fact that this measure would not only be legal, but morally and politically essential. Especially since these frozen funds generate interest, 3 billion euros last year in the European Union. Profits that Europe has already released and which must be used to rebuild Ukraine.

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