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‘Architect of Russia sanctions’ to return to White House – media

Daleep Singh played a key role in freezing Moscow’s assets early in the Ukraine conflict, according to reports

Daleep Singh, a former senior US national security adviser who helped orchestrate Washington’s sanctions against Russia over the Ukraine conflict, is poised to rejoin the White House, American media outlets reported on Thursday.

According to Axios, which first broke the news, Singh’s comeback to the administration of US President Joe Biden, which he left in April 2022, comes as Washington seeks “innovative ways to punish Russia” and help Ukraine.

The former official was instrumental in cutting Moscow off from the SWIFT global financial system and freezing around $300 billion of Russian sovereign assets in the West, Bloomberg reported. Reuters also noted Singh’s role in sanctioning Russian banks, companies, businessmen, and officials.

Singh left the Biden administration to become chief global economist at PGIM Fixed Income, a Wall Street asset manager. His position was filled by Mike Pyle, who is scheduled to leave the White House later this month for family reasons, Bloomberg said.

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According to the news agency, Singh, who is widely regarded as a proponent of cryptocurrency regulation, is expected to work on initiatives such as reforming the World Bank, expanding the US alternative to China’s Belt and Road Initiative, and rolling out economic efforts to counter Washington’s adversaries.

Axios also reported that Singh would be coordinating US positions at the G7 and G20 later this year.

The scale of Western sanctions against Russia reached an unprecedented level in 2022 after the outbreak of hostilities between Moscow and Kiev. European Union countries are close to agreeing a 13th package of sanctions on Moscow, meaning Russia will further consolidate its position as the world’s most sanctioned nation, with over 16,500 restrictions imposed after February 2022.

Russian officials have repeatedly stated that Western measures have failed to break the national economy, insisting instead that sanctions have backfired on the countries that imposed them.

Singh’s reported return would come as the US continues to discuss with its partners possible ways to seize frozen Russian assets. Numerous officials in the West, however, have cautioned that this move would be challenging due to a lack of adequate legal grounds.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova warned earlier this week that Moscow would regard the seizure of its assets as “theft” and would retaliate with “very harsh” countermeasures. In December, Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov noted that Moscow already had a specific list of Western assets it could take over in retaliation.

February 16, 2024 at 01:48PM
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