The Netherlands has frozen more than 640 million euros in Russian assets since the beginning of the war

The Netherlands has frozen more than 640 million euros in Russian assets since the beginning of the war

Since the start of the war in Ukraine, the Netherlands has frozen more than 640 million euros in Russian assets. This was revealed on Friday from a statement by Stef Blok, the national coordinator for compliance and enforcement of sanctions. Six Russian planes have sunk, as well as 24 boats and ships.

It is also said that financial transactions worth a total of just over 425 million euros have been blocked since the start of the war. In his final report, he also states that in the real estate field there are “no signals” that the sanctions policy has not been complied with. Blok states that “the Dutch real estate market is hardly interesting” for Russians who are on the sanctions list.

Now that Blok has presented his final report, he is resigning. On Wednesday, he called for his permanent position in the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. That is one of his eighteen recommendations. He also recommends improving the legal basis for data exchange between authorities such as the Tax Authorities and the Land Registry. One of the planes that is being grounded belongs to the Russian airline Aeroflot, the others are from the Russian state leasing company GTLK.

The bloc was appointed in early April with the intention of leading the implementation of the sanctions policy against Russia, as there was much criticism of the slow implementation of the policy.

Also read: Oligarchs in the Netherlands can easily avoid sanctions with economic tricks

The Ukrainian army is blocking Russian attempts to cross the river

The Ukrainian army has prevented Russian soldiers from attempting to cross the Siversky Donets River. To reports the British Ministry of Defense on Friday. On Wednesday, the Ukrainian Ministry of Defense already shared on Twitter: aerial photos of the failed crossing† It shows more than twenty wrecks of armored vehicles.

According to the British, “Russia is making a significant effort” to break through to Slovyansk and Kramatorsk, two cities west of the river. Such a breakthrough could surround Ukrainian military personnel.

Crossing a river in a disputed area is a very risky maneuver. “It shows the pressure Russian commanders are under to make progress in eastern Ukraine.”

Sweden wants security guarantees up to NATO membership

When Sweden applies for NATO membership, certain countries within the alliance must provide security guarantees in the period between nomination and accession. This was said by the Swedish Foreign Minister Ann Linde on Friday, Swedish media inform. Sweden is expected to submit a formal application for membership on Monday.

The United States and the United Kingdom have already committed themselves to providing such security guarantees. The Dutch cabinet is “open and positive” about a possible Swedish request for security guarantees. This was stated by Minister Wopke Hoekstra (Foreign Affairs, CDA) on Thursday according to The Telegraph said. Should it get there, it should happen in cooperation with other European countries, says Hoekstra.

Russian answer
The Swedish parliament will meet on Friday with Linde and Minister of Defense Peter Hultqvist to discuss the security situation in the Scandinavian country. Experts say there will be no Russian military response if Sweden formally applies for membership. Six of the eight political parties in the Folketing’s defense committee support this conclusion, reports Aftonbladet Friday, although the Swedish government says it can not rule out an armed attack on Sweden.

NATO membership may partially remove this uncertainty, Hultqvist said on Friday. He also believes that Swedish membership of the defense alliance can not only contribute to the security situation in neighboring countries, but also expand defense co-operation in the Scandinavian countries.

Foreign Minister Linde further said that a neutral status has always “served Sweden well”, but that since the Russian invasion of Ukraine there is a “new situation”. Finnish leaders said on Thursday that they want to join the alliance as soon as possible.

An exercise of the Swedish navy in the Swedish city of Berga. Photo by Fredrik Sandberg / AP

Borrell: Another 500 million euros in military aid Ukraine

The European Union will provide Ukraine with an additional 500 million euros in military aid. EU Foreign Secretary Josep Borrell said this on Friday during a press conference ahead of a G7 meeting later Friday, the news agency Reuters reported. This brings the total EU military support to 2 billion euros.

The military support would be intended for heavy weapons, such as tanks and artillery. Borrell speaks of “a new impulse.” He says more pressure will be put on Russia “with economic sanctions and the continuation of Russia’s international isolation and the fight against disinformation.” Borrell is also “confident” that an agreement will be reached on a boycott of Russian oil in the coming days. “We need to get rid of Russia’s oil dependence,” he said.

‘Aggressive and combative player’
Earlier in the day, British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss also said it was “very important” to continue the pressure on Russia by supplying more weapons to Ukraine and imposing further sanctions. On Friday, the foreign ministers of the G7 countries in northern Germany will meet to discuss the situation in Ukraine. If no agreement is reached on Friday, it must happen during a new meeting on Monday, Borrell said.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov believes that “the EU has evolved from a constructive economic platform on which it was founded to an aggressive and combative player who shows his ambitions far beyond the European continent,” he said on Friday. conference. press conference according to to the news agency AFP.

EU Foreign Minister Josep Borrell speaks to the press. Photo by Olivier Hoslet / EPA

Summary: Russia’s oil revenues have risen, US aid package not adopted by Senate

These are the main developments from Thursday evening and night from Thursday to Friday:

  • Russia’s oil revenues have risen this year at 50 pct, writes the news agency Bloomberg. This year, it earned about $ 20 billion a month, with Asian countries like China and India as the biggest customers. Yet European sanctions appear to have some effect: last month, one million barrels less were produced per day.
  • Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky said Russian forces carried out an air strike on the city of Chernihiv on Thursday. hit a school† Zelensky called the bosses behind the attack “just sick” in his daily video address. He also condemned the attack on an oil refinery in Kremenstjoek, the AP news agency reported.
  • A US law to support Ukraine with a package worth $ 40 billion did not reach the Senate. Despite support from the leaders of both parties, Republican Senator Rand Paul was thwarted, CNN reports. Paul wants to appoint a special inspector general to oversee the cost of military aid to Ukraine.

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