We will be very strict if our assets are “stolen”.

MOSCOW (Reuters) – Russia warned the West on Tuesday that Moscow would be very strict if the United States and the European Union seized Russian assets worth hundreds of billions of dollars.

after President Vladimir Putin After sending troops into Ukraine in 2022, the United States and its allies blocked transactions with the Russian Central Bank and the Russian Finance Ministry, freezing about $300 billion in Russian sovereign assets in the West.

The European Union said on Monday that it had adopted a law to set aside windfall profits generated from the frozen assets of the Russian Central Bank, in the first concrete step towards achieving the bloc’s goal of using the money to finance the reconstruction of Ukraine.

“This is theft: it is the seizure of something that does not belong to you,” Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova told Sputnik Radio.

Zakharova said Moscow’s response would be “very harsh” because Russia feels it is mainly dealing with thieves.

“Given that our country has classified this as theft, the attitude will be towards the thieves,” Zakharova said. “Not as political manipulators, not as overrated technologists, but as thieves.”

Russia said that if its assets were seized, it would seize American, European and other assets in retaliation.

(Reporting by Reuters, Editing by Guy Faulconbridge)

(Tags for translation) European Union

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