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Russia preparing to thwart property arrests on Yukos lawsuits — minister

June 04, 2015, 17:28 UTC+3 MOSCOW
Russia's justice minister doesn't know is the officials of his ministry are drafting a plan of payments to former YUKOS shareholders
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Russian Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov

Russian Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov

© ITAR-TASS/Mikhail Japaridze

MOSCOW, June 4. /TASS/. Russia is preparing to rebuff arrests of its property abroad upon lawsuits that may be filed by shareholders of the defunct oil corporation Yukos, who won a legal process in The Hague, Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov told reporters on Thursday.

"Quite naturally, we're doing preparations in this respect so as to prevent the actions that as far as we can understand run counter to law," he said.

The procedure of execution of The Hague court resolutions presupposes that the shareholders should file requests for the authorization of practical steps with the national jurisdictions that are signatories of this charter, the minister said.

"As for now, such requests have been filed in France and in the US," Konovalov said. "Correspondingly, each time a new request surfaces the Russian Federation will have to take all the steps it finds necessary to take in order to counteract the endorsement of these steps."

The list of these steps definitely includes retaining of local lawyers and filing of protests with courts and the simultaneous presentation of Russia's arguments to the national courts where the suits will be brought.

As for a possible plan of payments to YUKOS's former shareholders under the ruling of the Hague court, the problem stands within the scope of powers of the Finance Ministry, he said adding that he did not know whether or not the officials of that ministry were drafting a plan of payments.

In July 2014, the Permanent Court of Arbitration at The Hague ruled that Russia was obliged to pay out $ 50.085 billion to YUKOS's shareholders. The European Court for Human Rights passed a ruling in July 2014 that they were entitled to getting the damages amounting to more than 1.8 billion euro.

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