Politico has found out why the EU is lifting sanctions on many Russian oligarchs

Politico has found out why the EU is lifting sanctions on many Russian oligarchs

The reason is the rush to formulate and implement them, which leads to successful appeals by lawyers

Politico has found out why the EU is lifting sanctions on many Russian oligarchs

One of the reasons for the recent lifting of sanctions against some Russians was the haste, hackwork and shortcomings in their justification, which allowed lawyers to find and exploit the gaps in the EU Council's position.

Source. This was reported by Politico.

The publication managed to obtain and study in detail five dossiers on the basis of which sanctions decisions were made.

In the case of RBC owner Grigory Beryozkin, EU Council lawyers had to defend themselves in court for an article written by Carmen artificial intelligence and for a link to the Russian Crimes website with non-existent journalists.

In the case of Vyacheslav Kantor, a beneficiary of the Acron campaign, the EU had to apologize for the nationality "Jewish/Russian" in his dossier. Kantor's lawyers managed to have this description recognized as anti-Semitic.

The use of dubious open source publications, including those with machine translation, is no exception, Politico emphasizes.

For example, articles from magazines such as Tatler, as well as copied articles from Wikipedia and Forbes profiles, sometimes in the form of screenshots, are used alongside articles from FT and Reuters.

"Taken together, this shows that important sanctions decisions leading to asset freezes and travel bans are based on shaky evidence that opens the door to court challenges," the publication writes.

In Kantor's dossier, for example, out of eight articles from Russian sources, six are machine translations, and two are advertisements. In one case, Kantor is named as a shareholder, not a beneficial owner, which implies a higher degree of control and can be easily challenged.

The reason for this is the sanctions mechanism itself. Applications for sanctions are prepared at the level of EU countries and submitted to a special body, the European External Action Service (EEAS), which in turn submits them to the EU Council.

As it turns out, without sufficient verification, which is not even formalized, the publication notes. Sanctions are usually approved without substantive discussion.

This is also facilitated by the extreme haste and workload. A diplomat from one of the EU countries says that specialized experts have been working on the dossier for at least 12 hours a day for the past year.

Currently, there are 95 lawsuits pending in the European Court of General Jurisdiction from Russian individuals on the sanctions lists, and Politico reminds us that about a third of them may be successful.

However, the justification for the sanctions can be improved, and the restrictions can be re-imposed, as has already happened with Yevgeny Prigozhin's mother Violetta.

Background. In early September, the European Court lifted sanctions against a Russian businessman for the first time.

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