The seizure of Russian assets by the United States would destroy Moscow’s bilateral relations with Washington, the Russian state news agency TASS quoted a Russian foreign ministry department head as saying.
It comes as top Western officials have suggested seizing frozen Russian reserves to help fund the future reconstruction of Ukraine.
“We warn the Americans of the detrimental consequences of such actions that will permanently damage bilateral relations, which is neither in their — nor in our interests,” said Alexander Darchiev, head of the ministry’s North America department. It was unclear to which assets he was referring.
Meanwhile, Darchiev said Washington’s involvement in Ukraine had increased to the degree that “Americans are increasingly becoming more and more a direct party in the conflict.”
He also said that, if the US singled out Russia as a “state sponsor of terrorism,” relations with Washington would have passed the point of no return.
Two US senators seeking to pass a law designating Russia as such visited Kyiv last month to discuss the bill with President Volodymyr Zelenskyy.
Here are the other main headlines from the war in Ukraine on August 13.
UK ministry says Russia faces bridge headache
A UK intelligence report says the two main road bridges that give Russia access to territory it has occupied on the west bank of the River Dnipro in Kherson Oblast are now probably out of use for substantial military resupply purposes.
Precision strikes earlier this month by Ukraine likely rendered a crossing at Nova Kakhovka unusable for heavy military vehicles.
Meanwhile, Russia has only succeeded in making superficial repairs to the damaged Antonivsky road bridge — which likely remains structurally undermined.
The main rail bridge near Kherson was also further damaged last week. Russia has been using a pontoon ferry near the railway bridge as its main military resupply route since late July.
Should Russia manage to make significant repairs to the bridges, they will remain a key vulnerability.
Supplies to thousands of troops on the western side are likely reliant on just two pontoon ferry crossing points.
With their supplies choked, the size of any Russian stockpiles Russia already on the west bank is likely to be a key factor in the force’s endurance.
Ukraine seeks IMF loan
Zelenskiy’s chief economic adviser Oleg Ustenko said that securing a new $5 billion (4.8 billion) loan from the International Monetary Fund (IMF) would help signal to Ukraine’s other creditors that its macroeconomic situation was under control.
Ukraine is currently grappling with the internal displacement of some 7 million people, while dealing with energy shortages, rising inflation, and a worsening humanitarian crisis as winter approaches.
“An IMF program of $5 billion would be in line with earlier funding levels and might be a catalyst for funding from other sources, including the EU, (the U.S.) Treasury and other individual countries,” Ustenko told Reuters.
More on the war in Ukraine
Moscow said it will not give Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant back to Ukraine despite the G7 demand, Russian officials have said. Read this story and more from Friday here.
rc/jcg (Reuters, AFP, dpa, AP)
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