Swiss examine potential breaches of Russian sanctions

By Thomson Reuters Feb 15, 2024 | 8:03 AM

ZURICH (Reuters) – Swiss prosecutors are looking into possible breaches of the neutral country’s sanctions against Russia imposed over Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine, the Office of the Attorney General said on Thursday.

The office is speaking with officials from the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), which oversees sanctions, and the national anti-money laundering office before deciding how to proceed.

“Currently various clarifications are underway,” the office said, declining to say how many cases were being examined, or give other details.

No formal investigations have begun, it said.

SECO declined to comment.

Switzerland this month agreed to ban the import of Russian diamonds in line with the latest round of European Union sanctions.

Bern agreed to adopt the 12th round of sanctions implemented by the EU in December, as it has with all previous rounds since the start of the Ukraine war almost two years ago.

Import bans have also been introduced on other goods that generate revenue for Russia, including pig iron and liquid petroleum gas.

Switzerland has so far placed 1,422 individuals and 291 organisations on its sanctions list, blocking an estimated 7.7 billion Swiss francs in financial assets and barring them from entry.

(Reporting by John Revill; Editing by Toby Chopra)