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Putin Prepares Retaliation in Kind if U.S. Seizes Russian Assets

The decree signed by Russian President Vladimir Putin today proposes to empower Russia to identify U.S. property, including securities, that Russia can seize for any losses arising from U.S. seizures of Russian assets. Besides whatever foreign investments are still in Russia, the decree also aims at U.S.-linked entities and citizens in Russia. The Russian government and central bank would be able to go to a Russian court to determine if there has been an unfair seizure of Russian assets. The court will be able to grant compensation in the form of property physically present in Russia, shares in Russia-registered businesses and property rights.

The decree includes setting up a governmental commission responsible for compiling the list of those who could be targeted for compensation. The decree listed securities, stakes in Russian companies, real estate, movable property and property rights among the U.S.-owned assets potentially liable for seizure.

Putin has given his government four months to work out the details. Then the legislation will be presented to the Duma. Previously, the U.S. Congress has passed legislation allowing the administration to confiscate Russian assets held in American banks and transfer them to Ukraine.