Russia vows reaction to auction of its Trade Mission building in Sweden
MOSCOW, February 18 (RAPSI) - Russia views the auctioning off Tuesday of its Trade Mission building in Stockholm as a grave violation of international law, Press Secretary for Presidential Affairs Viktor Khrekov told RIA Novosti. He added that Sweden can expect "symmetrical measures" from the Russian Federation.
On Tuesday, the Russian Trade Mission building Stockholm in Stockholm. The building was sold for EUR 2 million. Russia addressed the issue numerous times, pointing out that the building was a part of Russian diplomatic consulate, and therefore immune from seizure. According to the Kremlin's official stance, the auction is legally void and will be ignored.
"Any attempt to enter the building, or any other action that may be interpreted as a threat to the security of the mission and its workers would be stopped immediately, regardless of any following descision adopted with disregard for international law," - Viktor Khrekov added.
Earlier in January, Swedish Ambassador to Russia Veronika Bard-Bringéus was summoned to the Russian Foreign Ministry and officialy told that Moscow refuses to recognize the legitimacy of a resolution to sell a building that belongs to the Russian Trade Mission in Sweden.
The sale of the Russian Trade Mission building in Stockholm is based on a 2011 order of the Supreme Court of Sweden in the lawsuit of German businessman Franz Sedelmayer versus the Russian Federation.
Franz Sedelmayer has been in a dispute with the Russian Federation for many years. He has been demanding compensation for damage caused when he attempted to start a business in St. Petersburg in the 1990s. On July 1, 2011, the Supreme Court of Sweden ruled that the diplomatic property of Russia in the country, including the residential building of the Russian Trade Mission in Sweden, should be seized and put up for auction in favor of Sedelmayer. However, the building of the current trade mission in Sweden has diplomatic immunity.