On April 29, the European Parliament (EP) adopted a resolution calling for sanctions against the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline project, as well as disconnecting Russia from the international SWIFT interbank payment system in the event of an aggravation of the situation in Ukraine. This is stated in a document published on the EP website.
It is noted that the resolutions of the European Parliament on international issues are of a declarative nature. At the same time, other institutions of the European Union (EU) should listen to the opinion of the deputies.
“The European Parliament insists that the EU should reduce its energy dependence on Russia and calls on the EU institutions and member states to stop the completion of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline,” the document says.
The EP also proposes to disconnect Russia from SWIFT in the event of an alleged “continuation of aggression in Ukraine.” As noted in the resolution, the European Union “must understand that the cost of such a violation of international rights and norms will be serious.”
“In such circumstances, the import of oil and gas to the EU should stop immediately, Russia should be disconnected from the SWIFT payment system, all assets in the EU of oligarchs close to the Russian authorities and their families should be frozen, visas should be canceled,” the document says.
The European Union called on to consider the possibility of “disconnecting Russia” from SWIFT by Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmitry Kuleba. In his opinion, this measure could be included in a new package of sanctions against Russia in the event of an escalation of the situation in southeastern Ukraine.
On April 28, the European Parliament proposed to disconnect Russia from SWIFT and abandon gas and oil “in the event of continued aggression in Ukraine.”
On April 29, the press secretary of the President of the Russian Federation Dmitry Peskov said that Russia would quickly find an alternative to SWIFT if it showed its unreliability.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, in turn, said that the country has a base for creating an analogue of SWIFT.
First Deputy Head of the International Committee of the Federation Council Vladimir Dzhabarov noted that if Russia is disconnected from SWIFT, the European Union will have to pay for oil in cash in suitcases. The senator also called the European Parliament a hotbed of Russophobia, and added that its resolutions have no legal force.
SWIFT is an international interbank data transfer and payment system, to which more than 11 thousand of the largest organizations in almost all countries of the world are connected.