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  • Writer's pictureOlga Nesterova

Janet Yellen Urges Utilization of Russian Assets to Aid Ukraine: A Bold Proposal

Janet Yellen, US treasury secretary, during an interview in Fredericksburg, Virginia, US, on Monday, May 13, 2024. Yellen will visit a high-speed internet installation site in Virginia. Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Janet Yellen, US treasury secretary, during an interview in Fredericksburg, Virginia, US, on Monday, May 13, 2024. Photographer: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

In a compelling opinion piece featured in The New York Times, Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen advocates for the strategic utilization of immobilized Russian assets to bolster support for Ukraine amidst Russia’s relentless invasion.

As tensions escalate and Ukraine faces a looming financial shortfall, Yellen calls for decisive action from the United States and its allies to provide the necessary financial backing to counter Russian aggression.

Yellen underscores the urgency of the situation, highlighting Russia’s calculated strategy to prolong the conflict in hopes of exhausting the coalition supporting Ukraine.

With each passing day, Russia’s belligerence not only jeopardizes Ukraine’s sovereignty but also undermines global security and the established international order.

Since the onset of Russian aggression, the United States and its Group of 7 counterparts have implemented comprehensive sanctions aimed at crippling Russia’s financial resources and military capabilities. Additionally, significant measures have been taken to empower Ukraine with weaponry, equipment, and financial assistance.

Crucially, Yellen emphasizes the importance of unlocking the substantial assets held by Russia in foreign financial institutions, estimated at around $280 billion. These assets, currently immobilized, represent a significant source of revenue that could be redirected to support Ukraine’s defense and reconstruction efforts.

Yellen proposes a innovative solution: a loan financed by the earnings generated from Russia’s assets. This approach not only provides immediate financial assistance to Ukraine but also holds Russia accountable for the damage caused by its aggression. Importantly, it sends a resolute message to Putin that the international community stands united in its commitment to defending Ukraine’s sovereignty.

The proposal has garnered support from key allies and has made significant strides, including discussions at the recent Group of 7 Finance Ministers and Central Bank Governors meeting.

As world leaders convene today for the G7 summit, Yellen urges them to endorse this initiative, signaling unwavering solidarity with Ukraine and reinforcing the collective resolve to confront Russian aggression head-on.


Source: NYT, June 13, 2024


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