The West is no longer thinking of cutting off Russia from Swift – Handelsblatt By Reuters

The West is no longer thinking of cutting off Russia from Swift – Handelsblatt By Reuters

BERLIN (Reuters) – Western governments are no longer considering excluding Russian banks from the global payment system Swift, the German newspaper Handelsblatt reported, citing sources from the German government.

Handelsblatt reported that, according to government sources, economic sanctions against major Russian banks are being considered as an alternative.

The Russian ruble strengthened on the report.

A White House National Security Council spokesman dismissed Handelsblatt’s story.

“No option is on the table. We are continuing very close consultations with European colleagues on the serious consequences for Russia if it continues to attack Ukraine,” the spokesman said.

A source from the German government close to the issue told Reuters: “We cannot confirm. It has not been decided yet.”

Russia’s exclusion from Swift, which would effectively cut the country off from the global economy, has long been seen as the ultimate sanctions Western countries could take against Russia to deter it from further military action against neighboring Ukraine.

The Swift system is a global network used by almost all financial institutions around the world to send money to each other and a cornerstone of the international payment system.

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