It has been eight months since the organization formally asked 19 countries and Europe to account for actions taken against hidden Russian assets, a cornerstone of Western retaliation against the invasion of Ukraine. But so far the only complete responses have come from Cyprus, Estonia and Portugal
What does he actually do?the West To implement sanctions against Russian oligarchsDecided after the invasion of Ukraine? Transparency International I tried to find out by sending a short questionnaire to the relevant offices in 19 countries and to European Commissionbased on the Freedom of Information Act (Voya). Eight months after sending the requests – which were issued as the second anniversary of the invasion approached – the official international organization specializing in transparency and accountability. anti-Corruption His patience ran out, and he reported the miserable results of his efforts.
Seven countries did not provide any response, including… United State, Germany And Canada. Two people rejected the request: United kingdom And Australia. Among them are seven others Holland And SpainOnly partial answers were provided (Inext was not among the selected recipients). And the European Commission? His response was “Particularly disappointing“, wrote Transparency International in a note. The Commission took four months to submit its comments, but “did not provide any concrete response on the application of financial sanctions,” the transparency organization charged in a tweet.
Access to transparency documents aims to know (and announce), among other things, the number of individuals and entities affected by financial sanctions, the total value of the assets frozen, and their type (from current account to yacht). And again, how many criminal proceedings have been brought to obtain their confiscation, and how many criminal investigations have been opened against these people for crimes such as money laundering and corruption. So far the only satisfactory answers have come from Estonia, Cyprus And Portugal. In Cyprus, a typical haven for the vast wealth of oligarchs, financial sanctions affected 170 entities and 36 individuals, and assets worth $1.544 billion were frozen. On this latter front, the record stands, at least among the few countries that responded Luxembourg, with assets worth $5.5 billion frozen. “Given the significant public interest” of the sanctions issue, Transparency International stresses that “the authorities of these countries must systematically share information on how they operate.”
“Transparency is heralded as a virtue of democratic regimes, as opposed to authoritarian regimes like Russia Put it in“, he comments Alberto VannucciProfessor of Political Science at the University of Pisa. “The resistance to providing this information is therefore very worrying, given that sanctions were introduced as a key part of Western policies against the invasion.” It is true that the Freedom of Information Act has limits, for example state security, but any denial on this basis “must be debated,” Fanucci continues. “The fact that several countries have quietly provided the requested information raises concerns that other countries intend to keep channels of communication open with the world of oligarchs and their interests, perhaps with the aim of re-establishing profitable economic relations in the future.”
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