Russia Threatens To Take Back Alaska From US Over War Sanctions

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Russia's State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin
Russia's State Duma Speaker Vyacheslav Volodin

A top Kremlin official has warned the United States against seizing or freezing Russian assets abroad amid the war, adding that it should remember that Russia could reclaim the state of Alaska. 

“Let America always remember, there is a part of [Russian] territory: Alaska,” Russia’s lower house speaker Vyacheslaw Volodin said Wednesday, as quoted by Hromadske. “So when they start trying to dispose of our resources abroad, before they do it, let them think: we also have something to return.”

The state of Alaska was once part of Russia and the latter had previously established several settlements in the area until the U.S. purchased it in May 1867 for $7.2 million. Alaska was formally transferred to the U.S. in October 1867. The purchase marked the end of Russia’s efforts to expand trade and settlements in North America. 

The state of Alaska shares close geographic proximity with Russia. Russia’s Big Diomede Island and Alaska’s Little Diomede Island are less than three miles apart. 

Volodin is not the only Russian official who spoke about reclaiming Alaska. In mid-March, Russian parliament member Oleg Matveychev made the same demands as “reparations” for the damage that economic sanctions caused to his country’s economy. 

“We should be thinking about reparations from the damage that was caused by the sanctions and the war itself, because that too costs money and we should get it back. The return of all Russian properties, those of the Russian empire, the Soviet Union and current Russia, which has been seized in the United States, and so on,” Matveychev said during an appearance on the Sunday Evening With Vladimir Soloviev. 

The stark warning from Volodin comes as Dmitry Medvedev, the deputy secretary of Russia’s Security Council headed by President Vladimir Putin, slammed the U.S. for what he described as its efforts to “spread chaos and destruction” for showing support to an international tribunal that would investigate Russia’s war crimes in Ukraine, according to a post on his official Telegram channel.

U.S. officials previously called Russia’s bombing of civilian targets in the Ukrainian city of Mariupol as well as the massacre of civilians in Bucha as war crimes. 


A polar bear with its cubs in the Alaska sea ice in 1985 -- Arctic summer sea ice melted in 2020 to the second smallest area since records began 42 years ago, US scientists announced
A polar bear with its cubs in the Alaska sea ice in 1985 -- Arctic summer sea ice melted in 2020 to the second smallest area since records began 42 years ago, US scientists announced
Photo: POLAR BEARS INTERNATIONAL / Steven C. AMSTRUP

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