Should the EU sanction Roman Abramovich? The billionaire owner of Chelsea Football Club is included at the top of a list of individuals put together by detained Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny, who is urging the EU to implement targeted sanctions against key figures close to Vladimir Putin.
Navalny may have published his list in part because Europe has a new tool in its sanctions toolbox. On 7 December 2020, the EU passed the so-called European Magnitsky Act (modelled after a similar act in the US), which enables the bloc to “freeze assets and impose travel bans on individuals involved in serious human rights abuses”.
Should Europe sanction individuals close to the Kremlin? Alaxei Navalny, an outspoken critic of Putin, has been sent to a penal colony for two and a half years for missing parole meetings while recovering in a Berlin hospital from a poisoning attempt. Following his arrest and the release of a documentary accusing Putin of corruption, Russia has been rocked by some of the biggest mass protests since 2012. Navalny is now calling on Western governments to sanction “key enablers and beneficiaries of Russian kleptocracy, with significant ties / assets in the West”.
Should the EU impose new sanctions against Russia? Is it time to use the recently approved “European Magnitsky Act” and implement targeted sanctions against Putin’s top cronies? Should the EU sanction Roman Abramovich? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!