Russia will respond to the seizure of money of Russian citizens and companies abroad by seizing funds of foreigners and foreign companies in Russia, RIA news agency quoted Dmitry Medvedev, deputy head of the security council, as saying on Saturday.
Moscow does not rule out nationalizing the assets of companies registered in the United States, European Union and other “unfriendly jurisdictions”, Medvedev was quoted as saying.
The Eurpean Union approved on Friday a Russian asset freeze that included Russian President Vladimir Putin and Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.
It was unclear how Lavrov and Putin would be affected by such a move or if it would be mainly symbolic.
A decision to freeze their assets indicates that Western powers are moving toward unprecedented measures to force Putin to stop the brutal invasion of Russia’s neighbor and from unleashing a major war in Europe.
“We are not just listing oligarchs, we haven’t just already listed many lawmakers who prepared these steps, but we are now also listing the president, Mr. Putin, and the foreign minister, Mr. Lavrov,” German Foreign Minister Annalena Baerbock said.
EU foreign ministers meeting late Friday would need unanimous support from the 27 member nations to impose such an asset freeze.