North Carolina State Treasurer Dale Folwell wants to sue Russia.

Folwell has joined with state treasurers from around the country in requesting that Congress provide the necessary tools for state pension funds to file lawsuits that could lead to the seizure of Russian assets to cover losses from investments in Russia.

In a press release Folwell said, “Amending FSIA [Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act] language to provide state pension funds with greater legal mechanisms to more easily recoup economic losses is a crucial step to impose serious financial consequences on the Russian tyrant diminishing his ability to fund this evil war.  We need to punish Putin and his cronies for pension and investment losses.  North Carolina taxpayers and those who teach, protect and otherwise serve should not suffer that burden.”

Folwell added, “Putin’s actions are barbarous and deplorable.  He is indiscriminately bombing and shelling peaceful citizens who want only to live freely under their constitutionally established government and rule of law.  His criminal actions are causing the loss of innocent life, depriving Ukrainian cities of food and medicine and creating a humanitarian crisis in which over 1.7 million refugees have flooded other European countries.”

The state of North Carolina doesn’t have a lot of money invested in Russia, only about 0.067 percent of the total holdings of $118.2 billion, or about $80 million.

But Folwell said that states need the power to confiscate assets to make up for those losses and Congress could create additional exceptions to make that possible by amending FSIA and taking that action could allow the economically injured parties to file additional court actions.

Folwell has asked the North Carolina General Assembly  to pass a resolution in support of amending FSIA and send it to Congress.

Folwell said that this effort to have FSIA amended to allow states to sue for Russian assets had bipartisan support from state treasurers across the country.