Ex-Yukos shareholders give up fight for Russian assets in France

Ex-Yukos shareholders give up fight for Russian assets in France
All the proceedings in France against Russia initiated by former shareholders of the defunct oil firm Yukos have been terminated as the plaintiffs withdrew their claims.

The seizure of Russian property in France will now be lifted, according to the International Center for Legal Aid, published on Tuesday.

“Today, on October 10 former Yukos shareholders declared they terminated all litigations they had initiated in 2014 in an attempt to achieve the recognition and enforcement of The Hague Tribunal’s decisions in France. This means that all arrests from Russia’s assets in France will be lifted,” said Andrey Kondakov, the chief of the center.

After the 2014 court ruling, France seized Russian state assets worth several hundred million euro — including a plot of land on which a new Orthodox cathedral in Paris is located and Moscow's stake in the Euronews TV channel.

Bank accounts and some €300 million of debt owed by satellite company Arianespace to the Russian space agency were also seized in a case.

This is the latest legal setback for the former shareholders. In a significant victory for Moscow in April last year, a Dutch district court ruled that the Hague-based International Permanent Court of Arbitration (PCA) did not have the legal authority to award $50 billion in compensation in the first place.

Now, the dispute will be reviewed by The Hague Court of Appeal.