Downing Street is looking at the possibility of housing Ukrainian refugees in the empty properties of sanctioned Russian oligarchs.
“We are open to all options,” said the prime minister’s official spokesman, confirming that the hotel belonging to Chelsea Football Club was among the properties being considered.
However, he cautioned that there were “some challenges around the special licence that has been created in relation to the sanctions” – with new legislation likely to be required.
Chelsea FC owner Roman Abramovich was sanctioned last week over his ties to President Putin – one of 18 oligarchs sanctioned by the UK government since the invasion of Ukraine began.
It comes after members of an anarchist group occupied a central London property linked to Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska on Monday morning.
“Squatting in residential buildings is illegal,” said the spokesman. “But we are working to identify the appropriate use for seized properties while owners are subject to sanctions.”