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Graphic shows possible sanctions against Russia over Ukraine.
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BUSINESS

Sanctiedreiging om invasie Oekraïne

By Duncan Mil

December 7, 2021 - The U.S. and European allies are weighing sanctions targeting Russia’s biggest banks, financial markets, and energy sector should President Vladimir Putin invade Ukraine.

The sanctions could block foreign investors from the $185 billion rouble-denominated sovereign debt market. Foreign buyers hold around $50 billion of these bonds.

Sanctions could also interrupt Moscow’s ability to convert rubles into dollars, euros or British pounds. Putin-friendly oligarchs and their family members could also be targets. The Nord Stream 2 natural gas pipeline to Europe is also among the options President Joe Biden may spell out when he speaks with Putin on Tuesday (December 7).

The most extreme step would be to bar Russia’s access to the Swift financial payments system used by banks worldwide. Blocking access to Swift would wreak havoc on the credit cards of ordinary citizens.

Biden spoke to the leaders of France, Germany, Italy and Britain ahead of the call on Monday, discussing their “shared concern about the Russian military build-up on Ukraine’s borders.

More than 94,000 Russian troops are believed to be massed near Ukraine’s borders. Ukraine Defense Minister Oleksii Reznikov said that Moscow may be planning a large-scale military offensive at the end of January, citing intelligence reports.

U.S. intelligence has told NATO allies that Putin could be preparing to invade Ukraine with as many as 175,000 troops in the coming year. Russia has denied plans to go to war, saying that European nations should scale back their support for Ukraine.

Sources
PUBLISHED: 07/12/2021; STORY: Graphic News; PICTURES: Getty Images
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