It is clear that Western sanctions against Russia’s financial sector are showing their first effects. Such as dpa He writes, people in major Russian cities complain about the first problems with withdrawing cash. A man told the agency that after a long search in the center of Moscow on Saturday, he only managed to find an ATM in Sberbank that exchanged 7,500 rubles (about 80 euros).
The Rosbank machine in the luxury store “Gum”, where dollars and euros can also be withdrawn, no longer issues foreign currencies, the 41-year-old said. Other Muscovites have also reported such problems.
Raiffeisen ATM ‘temporarily closed’
A man from the Baltic city of Saint Petersburg sent a picture of a Raiffeisen Bank ATM, the screen of which read: “ATM is temporarily closed.” Another machine did not issue the requested amount of 50,000 rubles (530 euros) – and instead offered to recommend trying to withdraw several small amounts again.
Six banks were directly affected
In response to Russia’s large-scale attack on the neighboring country, both the European Union and the United States imposed sanctions on Russia’s financial sector. Six Russian banks – including the country’s second largest, VTB Bank – were completely affected by the US punitive measures.
This means that US citizens and companies are not allowed to transact with them, or freeze their US assets – or even their assets that come into contact with the US financial system. In addition, the government prohibits all US institutions from maintaining accounts for the largest Russian financial institution, Sberbank.
On Friday, several large Russian banks – including Sberbank and VTB Bank – assured the Russians in a joint statement that there would be no problems with withdrawing cash.
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