Russia is launching a massive offensive

The United States and its allies have frozen more than $58 billion from Russian oligarchs

The U.S. and its allies have frozen or frozen more than $58 billion worth of assets in the past year as Western governments press for the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. of the Task Force on the Use of Sanctions.

Russia’s Elites, Proxies and Oligarchs (REPO) task force held its sixth multilateral meeting of officials Thursday morning to discuss the group’s current work and pledge to “redouble” efforts to punish Russian President Vladimir Putin and his allies. The task force is a joint effort of the United States, Australia, Canada, Germany, Italy, France, Japan, the United Kingdom and the European Commission.

“REPO will redouble its efforts to hold Russia accountable for its unjust war, and oppose Russian efforts to undermine, avoid or circumvent REPO’s collective sanctions,” a joint statement released after the meeting and first obtained by CNN said.

“REPO continues to identify, track and freeze the assets of sanctioned Russians with the aim of depriving the Kremlin of the funds it needs to fight its illegal war,” it continued.

Detecting sanctions evasion: The task force, set up last March, is taking more action against sanctions evasion as the US and its allies try to close cracks in the sanctions regime, which has weakened but not crippled the Russian economy.

Following Thursday’s meeting, REPO issued a joint global consultation to help the private sector identify and prevent public sanctions evasion. False commercial information to ship controlled goods, including those that support the Kremlin’s war machine.

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The task force has also frozen financial assets and seized luxury yachts, high-end real estate and priceless works of art, and U.S. authorities recovered a possible Fabergé egg from a yacht seized from a Russian oligarch last summer.

A U.S. Treasury official told CNN that REPO provides a valuable and streamlined mechanism for governments involved to use many of the same tools and best practices in a broader effort to curb sanctions evasion.

More than a year after Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Biden administration officials are focusing on how to fill gaps in evading sanctions, which have spread from adversaries like China to allies like Turkey, India and the United Arab Emirates.

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