Switzerland has announced it is abandoning its historic neutrality and will add to Vladimir Putin’s troubles by freezing Russian assets.
The move is the latest blow to Putin amid Russia’s ongoing invasion of Ukraine.
Like China, Russia’s wealthy elite stash valuable assets and cash Western countries.
By parking their cash in the West, their wealth is shielded from their own corrupt governments.
Due in part to its famous neutrality, Switzerland is a favorite among Russian Oligarchs parked to park their cash.
In a statement, Swiss Justice Minister Karin Keller-Sutter said the sanctions will impact “oligarchs of Russian or Ukrainian nationality who are particularly close to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
“These are five persons with strong economic connections into Switzerland.”
Swiss Federal President Ignazio Cassis said:
“The Swiss Federal Council has decided today to fully adopt EU sanctions.
“It is an unparalleled action of Switzerland, who has always stayed neutral before.
“Russia’s attack is an attack on freedom, an attack on democracy, an attack on the civil population, and an attack on the institutions of a free country.
“This cannot be accepted regarding international law, this cannot be accepted politically, and this cannot be accepted morally.
“To play into the hands of an aggressor is not neutral.
“Having signed the Geneva convention of human rights, we are bound to humanitarian order.
“Other democracies shall be able to rely on Switzerland; those standing for international law shall be able to rely on Switzerland; states that uphold human rights shall be able to rely on Switzerland,” he said.
“Switzerland reaffirms its solidarity with Ukraine and its people; it will be delivering relief supplies for people who have fled to Poland,” the government said in a seperate statement confirming the news.
“In view of Russia’s continuing military intervention in Ukraine, the Federal Council took the decision on February 28 to adopt the packages of sanctions imposed by the EU on February 23 and 25.”
Switzerland will forgo its commitment to neutrality & impose sanctions on Russia, Swiss Federal President Ignazio Cassis says, calling Russia’s actions an “attack on freedom, an attack on democracy, an attack on the civil population & an attack on institutions of a free country.”
— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) February 28, 2022
England also delivered another big blow by announcing changes that will require foreign owners of British property to disclose the real owners behind all the shell corporations.
Many wealthy Russians have parked billions in cash by buying mansions in London.
From The Times UK:
Foreign owners of British property will have to disclose their identities for the first time as part of measures to crack down on Russian oligarchs laundering their wealth.
Under the plans, to be announced by Boris Johnson today, it will become illegal to hide the true “beneficial” ownership of UK property behind shell companies, with penalties of up to five years in prison.
At the same time, new laws will give the police greater powers to investigate the owners of UK assets that are believed to have been paid for by money laundering.