Switzerland adopts new EU sanctions against Russia and Belarus – JURIST

The Swiss Federal Council on Friday adopted new European Union (EU) sanctions against Russia and Belarus. Although Switzerland is not a member of the EU, it has several bilateral treaties with the bloc. The sixth EU sanctions package includes an oil embargo, prompting the Federal Council to commission a study on the economic consequences of the imposition of the oil embargo.

The sanctions against individuals and entities mirror existing EU sanctions targeting military personnel accused of atrocities in Bucha and Mariupol. Among them are also several people with close financial ties to the Kremlin. A notable addition is Aleksandra Melnichenko, who was sanctioned shortly after her husband, Russian billionaire Andrey Melnichenko, transferred his business assets to her. In a bombshell investigation, Reuters found that Andrey transferred Eurochem and SUEK, two of the world’s largest coal and fertilizer companies, into his wife’s name a day before his sanction, in an effort to protect his assets.

The new penalties also include Sberbank, one of the largest Russian banks, thereby preventing Sberbank from accessing the SWIFT transaction system in Switzerland. SWIFT is a global financial messaging service that enables banks to communicate during financial transactions across the world. It is one of the most commonly used services. SWIFT has announced its intention to comply with the sanctions.

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