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Politico: Non-military option for neutral countries in EU plan on using frozen Russian asset proceeds

Politico citing unnamed diplomats: EU weighing allowing its neutral members to opt for providing only humanitarian Ukraine aid, not arms, from frozen Russian assets.
frozen Russian assets
Frozen Russian assets. Illustrative photo via RT.
Politico: Non-military option for neutral countries in EU plan on using frozen Russian asset proceeds

The European Union is considering allowing its neutral member countries to opt out of using frozen Russian asset proceeds to purchase weapons for Ukraine, according to Politico, citing unnamed European diplomats.

Instead, these neutral nations would limit themselves to providing humanitarian assistance to Ukraine from the Russian asset proceeds. This proposed exemption comes ahead of a meeting this Wednesday where EU envoys aim to strike a deal unlocking funding for Ukraine’s military aid.

The EU had originally proposed in March to use 90% of the profits from Russia’s sovereign assets frozen by Euroclear to buy arms for Ukraine, with the remaining 10% going to humanitarian aid. However, neutral countries like Austria, Malta, Cyprus, and Ireland demanded an exemption from the weapons purchases.

Politico reports that the latest proposal circulated on Friday takes “a slightly tougher approach” to Euroclear by halving its commission from the frozen assets to 1.5% from 3% originally planned. Even so, Euroclear would still retain billions as protection against potential lawsuits from Russia.

If approved, the deal could see the EU transferring between €2.5-3 billion by July to bolster Ukraine’s defenses against the ongoing Russian aggression.

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