The Kremlin vowed Monday to retaliate if Britain seized Russian oligarchs’ London properties as part of sweeping sanctions aimed at deterring Moscow from invading Ukraine.
British Foreign Secretary Liz Truss promised Sunday to unveil legislation this week introducing a wide range of sanctions that could target “any company of interest to the Kremlin.”
“There will be nowhere to hide for Putin's oligarchs,” Truss told Sky News, adding that “nothing is off the table” when asked about Britain’s ability to seize property in London.
President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov described Truss’ warning as an “extremely alarming” statement that “undermines investment attractiveness and the United Kingdom’s attractiveness as such.”
“It’s not often you see or hear such direct threats to attack a business,” Peskov told reporters.
He added that Moscow will “proceed from its own interests when formulating retaliatory measures.”
“An attack by one particular country on Russian business of course implies retaliatory measures,” the state-run TASS news agency quoted Peskov as saying.
When asked about the challenge of “uprooting” Kremlin-linked oligarchs enmeshed in Britain’s politics, real estate and financial industry, Truss said:
“There’s a real threat here to freedom and democracy in Europe, and that is more important than short-term economic gains.”