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20 July, 2024
 
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Russian assets to fund Ukraine's defense against Russia

$50 Billion from Russia's assets frozen by sanctions will fund Ukraine's defense efforts, in a twist of financial irony amid the conflict

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Leaders of the Group of Seven nations have struck a landmark agreement to extend a $50 billion loan to Ukraine, funded by interest earned on Russia’s immobilized central bank assets. The deal, hashed out during their summit in Italy, aims to bolster Ukraine’s efforts amid ongoing conflict with Russia.

President Joe Biden hailed the move as historic, emphasizing its significance in supporting Ukraine’s defense. Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy welcomed the loan as essential for sustaining the country’s resilience in the face of aggression.

The loan, mostly guaranteed by the U.S. government, will tap into profits from approximately $260 billion in frozen Russian assets, primarily held across European Union nations. French officials noted the possibility of augmenting the fund with additional contributions.

Efforts to directly transfer these assets to Ukraine have been legally complex, prompting nations to utilize interest earnings instead. The disbursement, anticipated by the end of 2024, will aid Ukraine across military, economic, and humanitarian fronts, according to U.S. officials.

While detailing the plan, leaders acknowledged the substantial costs of ongoing conflict and Ukraine’s extensive reconstruction needs, estimated at $486 billion over the next decade by the World Bank.

Critics, including China, have voiced opposition, accusing the U.S. of exacerbating tensions through unilateral actions. Concerns also linger about potential financial repercussions for European nations should Ukraine default on the loan.

[Information sourced from AP News]

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Cyprus  |  Ukraine  |  World

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