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"We are much surprised by this decision". The lawyers of the former YUKOS shareholders appeal the Hague District Court decision

Anastasia Astashkevich, the Managing Partner gives her comment on the "Kommersant" Publishing House materials

The former YUKOS shareholders are surprised at the Hague District Court decision which discharged the $50 bln imposed on Russia for expropriating the oil company assets. "Kommersant" got comments from the RF Ministry of Justice, saying that this gives reasons to demand lifting the arrests of Russian foreign assets in the countries, and also "makes the arbitration decision practically unenforceable in those countries, where the proceedings haven't started yet". At the same time, the lawyers of the bankrupt oil company former shareholders insist that the discharge of the decision in the Netherlands doesn't mean that it will fail to be recognized and enforced in other countries.

Today the YUKOS former shareholders held a phone conference, which was broadcast in 56 countries. The lawyers who represented the interests of the oil company, and Tim Osbourne personally frankly shared that they hadn’t expected this kind of decision in the Hague District Court. "We are much surprised at this decision. We will appeal it in the Court of Appeal. This is all I can say by now",— Tim Osbourne stated, having reminded, that " YUKOS liquidation was politically motivated".

The company's lawyers stated that they expect to discharge this decision in the appellate instance. The appeal will be filed to the Hague Court of Appeal. "We have three months to file the appeal, another three months to file supplements and amendments",— stated the GML representatives.

At the conference, the lawyers representing the interests of the former YUKOS shareholders covered the question regarding the prospects of litigations on validating the decision discharged by the Hague Court of Arbitration, started in foreign state courts. "Each foreign jurisdiction courts will decide on whether or not they will recognize this decision. “This will not bring the already initiated litigations to an end ",— according to GML lawyers. Thus, in accordance with the plaintiffs opinion, the discharge of the arbitration decision in the Netherlands doesn't mean that it cannot be recognized and enforced in other countries, where the former YUKOS shareholders have appealed. Apart from the Netherlands, currently there are six countries: Belgium, France, Great Britain, Germany, USA, India.

Mikhail Khodorkovsky, the former Head of YUKOS, also made a comment on the decision of the Hague District Court. In Twitter he explained it by the fact that "the West decided to ease the pressure".

Dmitry Peskov, the President of Russia Press Secretary, stated that all countries will immediately terminate the enforcement on the former YUKOS shareholders case . "It is quite clear to us that this is not the end of the story" — said Mr. Peskov. According to him, "the work will be continued in all possible jurisdictions".

Authorities in the Ministry of Justice of Russia have explained that the discharge of the Hague Court of Arbitration decision does not lift arrests of the Russian foreign assets, but gives ground to demand it. "Under the District Court of the city of the Hague ruling, effective immediately, the arbitration decision on the suit of the former shareholders of YUKOS Oil Company, OJSC has been discharged completely. This verdict gives ground to apply for a dischrge of recognition and enforcement of the arbitration decision in those countries, in which the execution order has already been granted (France, Belgium), and makes the arbitration decision practically unenforceable in those countries, where the proceedings haven't started yet",— authorities of Ministry of Justice explained . The authority also reported that Russia will seek compensation for the legal costs (preliminarily estimated at 16,800 EUR — "Kommersant").

The positive result of award of the District Court judgment is that, the assets of the Russian Federation shall be unfrozen — Anastasia Astashkevich, the Managing Partner of "Astashkevich and Partners" Bureau of Attorneys commented—"Other proceedings for the recognition of the arbitration decision will surely be held in each jurisdiction, but there is a high probability, that the enforcement of the arbitration decision will be denied. The arguments of the Russian side accepted by the District Court are convincing.

Авторы: Андрей Райский, Дарья Коржова
Источник: ИД «Коммерсант» http://www.kommersant.ru/doc/2968477

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