Today, Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA), Chairwoman of the House Committee on Financial Services, made the following statement regarding the U.S. Treasury Department’s decision in December to remove sanctions on three Russian companies connected to Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska:
“I am very concerned about the Treasury Department’s actions to lift sanctions on businesses connected to Oleg Deripaska. Deripaska is a Russian oligarch with close ties to Vladimir Putin, who also has a history with Paul Manafort, the former Trump campaign chairman who has been convicted of serious financial crimes uncovered as a result of Special Counsel Mueller’s investigation into Russian interference in the last presidential election.
“What’s more, Deripaska has faced numerous allegations of criminal activity and was cited by the Treasury Department in April as saying he does not separate himself from the Russian state.
“I don’t believe Deripaska should be allowed to retain any influence or level of control over these companies.
“The Administration’s approach to Russia sanctions has been haphazard, often laggard, as well as inconsistent with its approach to sanctions imposed on other countries. Moreover, the delisting agreement for Deripaska’s companies is too favorable to Deripaska, including by allowing him to benefit from potentially tens of millions of dollars in debt forgiveness by transferring some of his shares to a Russian bank to satisfy debts that Deripaska owes that bank.
“For these reasons, I look forward to working with my colleagues in both chambers and across the aisle to hold this Administration accountable for its actions and ensure that the strongest possible sanctions against Russia remain in place.”